Man checks in to prison for motel robbery
NORRISTOWN » A Pottstown man who robbed a borough motel at gunpoint is now checking in to a state prison.
Damien Donte Hayes, 30, of the first block of East Second Street, was sentenced on Tuesday in Montgomery County Court to 1½ to five years in a state correctional facility after he pleaded guilty to a felony robbery charge in connection with the 2:11 p.m. Nov. 18, 2017, holdup at America’s Best Value Inn on East High Street.
Common Pleas Court Judge Richard P. Haaz, who accepted a plea agreement in the case, also ordered Hayes to pay $40 in restitution to the motel and to stay away from the business.
Other charges of person not to possess a firearm, carrying a
firearm without a license, simple assault and theft by unlawful taking were dismissed against Hayes as part of the plea agreement.
At the time of the robbery, Hayes, who previously listed an address along Yerkes Avenue in Norristown, was on parole for an August 2017 simple assault conviction stemming from a February 2015 domestic-related incident in Norristown, according to court papers.
On Tuesday, Hayes admitted that the Pottstown robbery represented a violation of his 2017 sentence for the simple assault and the judge sentenced Hayes to serve 10 months and 21 days in back prison time for the violation. That sentence will run concurrently with the state prison term Hayes received for the Pottstown robbery.
During the robbery incident, Pottstown detectives alleged Hayes entered the motel at 29 E. High St., approached a female desk clerk and asked for change.
“When the victim opened the till, Hayes presented a black handgun and placed it over the counter. Hayes demanded money and the victim pleaded with Hayes not to hurt her,” Pottstown Detective Heather Long wrote in the arrest affidavit, adding the clerk handed over $40 and Hayes left the motel.
Video surveillance was obtained from several sources during the investigation and it assisted detectives in identifying Hayes as a suspect in the robbery.
“During review, the tattoo that was photographed on the back of Hayes’ right hand during a prior arrest can be seen on the video surveillance. Hayes in seen holding a black semiautomatic handgun in his right hand during the robbery,” Long alleged in court documents.
Detectives alleged a criminal history check of Hayes determined he had a prior conviction that made him ineligible to possess a firearm and a records check also revealed Hayes did not have a permit to carry a firearm, according to the criminal complaint.