FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
December 22, 2014
Contact: Heather F. Williamson
Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office
20 East Market Street
Leesburg, VA 20176-2809
NORTHERN VIRGINIA MEN CONVICTED OF ROBBERY
JURY FIXES SENTENCE AT THIRTY-THREE YEARS IN PRISON AND A $360 FINE
SECOND DEFENDANT DECIDES TO ENTER PLEA
LEESBURG, Virginia – December 12, 2014. A Loudoun County jury found Ronald Antonio
Rauda Marquez, 20, guilty of Abduction with Intent to Extort Money, Robbery, Conspiracy to Commit Robbery, Use of a Firearm in the Commission of a Felony, and Use of a Firearm in the Commission of a Felony, subsequent offense. After two days of evidence and deliberations, the jury ultimately fixed his punishment at thirty-three years in prison and assessed a fine of $360.
In the early morning hours of June 14, 2014, Rauda Marquez, Brayan Esau Rivas, and a third unknown individual met the victim at an IHOP restaurant located in Sterling, Virginia. The four men exited the restaurant together and entered a vehicle located in the parking lot. Once inside the vehicle, Rauda Marquez, Rivas and the third unknown man robbed the victim at gunpoint. The victim complied with their requests, giving the men his cell phone and withdrawing $360 from a nearby ATM. The victim was then driven to an unknown location in Sterling where he was forced out of the car.
During the sentencing phase of the trial, Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney Eric Pohlner, urged the jury to craft a sentence that would help give the victim some peace of mind that these men could not hurt him again. Pohlner told the jury that “fear can’t be undone, and that the victim’s mental pain and fear is ongoing.” Pohlner, further reminded the jury that this was not a quick crime, instead this was an incident that lasted at least thirty minutes, during which the victim had a gun pointed at his head continuously.
Rauda Marquez’s case is currently set for March 13, 2015 in Circuit Court where a final sentencing hearing will be held before the Hon. Burke F. McCahill who presided over the trial. Thirteen years of the thirty-three year sentence are mandatory minimum sentences as directed under the Virginia Code, and therefore cannot be reduced in whole or in part.
On December 16, just four days after Rauda Marquez was found guilty by the jury, Brayan Esau
Rivas, Rauda Marquez’s co-defendant, elected not to have his case go to trial, and entered Alford pleas of guilt to charges of Abduction with Intent to Extort Money, Robbery, Conspiracy to Commit Robbery, Use of a Firearm in the Commission of a Felony, and Use of a Firearm in the Commission of a Felony, subsequent offense. Rivas is scheduled to be sentenced on March 30, 2015.
“It’s our hope that these two guilty findings will aid us in determining the identity of the third suspect and bring that individual to justice and hold him accountable for his role,” said Commonwealth’s Attorney Jim Plowman. “Anyone with information about any of these individuals is encouraged to come forward.” Rauda Marquez and Rivas are currently being held in custody without bond.