TRENTON – Attorney General Gurbir S. Grewal announced that two men were sentenced to prison today in connection with a string of armed robberies at 7-Eleven stores in Camden, Burlington and Mercer counties in 2014, including a robbery in Pennsauken in which a clerk was shot and paralyzed.
The two men – both Camden residents – pleaded guilty on April 30 and were sentenced today by Superior Court Judge John T. Kelley in Camden County:
- Charles L. Walls, 35, was sentenced to 30 years in state prison, including 17 ½ years of parole ineligibility. He pleaded guilty to first-degree charges of attempted murder and robbery, as well as two counts of third-degree criminal restraint. He was sentenced to 20 years in prison with 17 years of parole ineligibility on the attempted murder charge, and a concurrent sentence of 10 years in prison on the robbery charge. He was sentenced to five years for each of the criminal restraint charges, with those sentences to run consecutively to the attempted murder sentence.
- Anthony T. Ervin, 27, was sentenced to 12 years in state prison, including just over 10 years of parole ineligibility. He pleaded guilty to first-degree robbery.
Deputy Attorney General Lisa M. Rastelli prosecuted the defendants and handled the sentencing hearings for the Division of Criminal Justice Gangs & Organized Crime Bureau.
In pleading guilty, Walls admitted that he participated in an armed robbery at a 7-Eleven on Westfield Avenue in Pennsauken at about 12:45 a.m. on Jan. 10, 2014. Walls admitted that he shot a store clerk during that robbery. The victim, a Paulsboro man who was 28 at the time, was shot multiple times with a .40-caliber handgun and was left paralyzed. Walls further admitted that he committed two of the other robberies, during which he restrained store clerks with zip ties. In pleading guilty, Ervin admitted that he participated in an armed robbery on June 13, 2014 at a 7-Eleven on East Church Street in Blackwood.
“Beginning with Walls’ ruthless shooting of a young store clerk in Pennsauken, these armed robbers spread terror at 7-Eleven stores across three counties,” said Attorney General Grewal. “The sentences imposed today ensure that these dangerous criminals have been removed from our communities for many years to come. I commend all of the law enforcement agencies that worked collaboratively and expeditiously to end this violent crime spree and bring these men to justice.”
“It took the teamwork of many law enforcement agencies to apprehend these violent robbers, and now we have translated that outstanding detective and prosecutorial work into these lengthy prison sentences,” said Director Veronica Allende of the Division of Criminal Justice. “The Camden County Prosecutor’s Office deserves special credit for coordinating this investigation.”
“The string of robberies committed by these men was stopped because of the tireless dedication and exchange of information among the local law enforcement agencies,” said Camden County Prosecutor Mary Eva Colalillo. “We are pleased that the investigation led to the successful prosecution in these matters.”
The investigation revealed that, in addition to the armed robbery in Pennsauken during which the clerk was shot, Walls and Ervin committed seven other armed robberies of 7-Eleven stores between April 27 and June 13, 2014. In four of the robberies – in Pennsauken, Hamilton Township (Mercer County), Medford Lakes, and Blackwood – they were assisted by a third man. In each robbery, the men used similar methods. They struck during the early morning hours and wore masks, hooded sweatshirts and gloves. One robber always was armed with a handgun and held the clerk at gunpoint, while the other man or men stole cash from the register and cigarettes. In four instances, the robbers used zip ties to restrain store clerks. They drove to the stores in a red-orange Chevrolet Sonic.
Walls and Ervin were arrested in a multi-agency investigation coordinated by the Camden County Prosecutor’s Office. Walls was arrested on June 13, 2014 at his apartment. Detectives executed search warrants for the apartment and for the getaway car, which was located at the apartment. They found a Ruger .40-caliber handgun in the apartment, along with packs of cigarettes, other tobacco products, and footwear and clothing items consistent with those worn in the robberies. Latex gloves and zip ties were found in the car. Ervin was arrested on Oct. 8, 2014. The two men have been jailed since their arrests.
The following agencies conducted the investigation:
- Camden County Prosecutor’s Office
- Medford Police Department
- Pennsauken Police Department
- Cherry Hill Police Department
- Hamilton Police Department
- Oaklyn Police Department
- Cherry Hill Police Department
- Moorestown Police Department
- Gloucester Township Police Department
- Evesham Police Department
Deputy Attorney General Lisa Rastelli prosecuted the case for the Division of Criminal Justice Gangs & Organized Crime Bureau under the supervision of Deputy Bureau Chief Erik Daab and Bureau Chief Lauren Scarpa Yfantis. Detective Vince McCalla coordinated the investigation for the Camden County Prosecutor’s Office.
The investigation revealed that Walls and Ervin committed the following eight robberies of 7-Eleven stores:
- Jan. 10, 2014, 7-Eleven at 6001 Westfield Avenue in Pennsauken.
- April 27, 2014, 7-Eleven at 610 Kresson Road in Cherry Hill.
- May 6, 2014, 7-Eleven at 7800 Maple Avenue in Cherry Hill.
- May 15, 7-Eleven at 1 East Camden Avenue in Moorestown.
- May 27, 2014, 7-Eleven at 1993 Arena Drive in Hamilton.
- May 27, 2014, 7-Eleven at 2 Stokes Road in Medford Lakes.
- June 3, 2014, 7-Eleven at 2 East Main Street in Marlton.
- June 13, 2014, 7-Eleven at 508 East Church Street in Blackwood.
For Walls: Assistant Deputy Public Defender Igor Levenberg, Camden County.
For Ervin: Megan Davies, Esq., Westmont, N.J.
Follow the New Jersey Attorney General’s Office online at Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Flicker & YouTube. The social media links provided are for reference only. The New Jersey Attorney General’s Office does not endorse any non-governmental websites, companies or applications.