5 charged in widespread armed robbery cases



GENESEE COUNTY — Arrests of suspects in a robbery of the Citizens Bank on Linden Road at Court Street in Flint Township helped police and prosecutors pull together a case that busted a local theft ring, according to a press release.

Genesee County Prosecutor David Leyton announced charges on May 16 against five individuals related to a string of violent armed robberies in three local communities over the past two years.

According to the police investigative reports, between July 30, 2010 and March 13, 2013, these individuals robbed at least 17 different banks and businesses in the City of Flint, Flint Township, and Mt. Morris Township.

“All these individuals are related to one another and investigators have referred to the criminal enterprise as the ‘family business,’” said Prosecutor Leyton.

Leyton has charged:

• Thomas Gatica III, of Flint; with 37 felony counts including armed robbery, conducting criminal enterprises (racketeering), and various weapons offenses.

• Albert Luther Read, Sr., of Flint; with 7 felony counts including armed robbery, conducting criminal enterprises (racketeering), and various weapons offenses.

• Albert Luther Read, Jr., of Flint; with 17 felony counts including armed robbery, conducting criminal enterprises (racketeering), and various weapons offenses.

• Ardis Read, of Flint, with 40 felony counts including armed robbery, conducting criminal enterprises (racketeering), and various weapons offenses.

• Archie Lee Williams, charged with 22 felony counts including armed robbery, conducting criminal enterprises (racketeering), and various weapons offenses.

During each of the robberies, at least two of the five individuals now charged were involved and various combinations of the five worked together during any one incident.

Some of the defendants were either in jail or prison during parts of the two year period when the robberies at hand were being committed. Albert Read, Sr., for example, was discharged from prison on Feb. 14 related to a 2003 conviction for receiving and concealing stolen property.

Less than two weeks after being discharged, on Feb. 25, he was involved in the armed robbery of the Check N Go payday advance store at the corner of Flushing Road and Ballenger Highway in the City of Flint.

Leyton credited the workings of the Genesee County Detectives Association or helping to solve these cases.

“The detectives from all local jurisdictions work very hard in a cooperative effort to solve crimes throughout Genesee County,” he said. “They meet monthly as a group and work together daily to put their information and resources together for the greater protection of all our local communities.”

“The individuals I have charged today will meet the full force of the criminal justice system in our county,” Prosecutor Leyton said. “We will do all we can to see that they are held accountable for the terror they inflicted and the crimes they committed and it is my hope that we can put them away for a very long time so that they can no longer wreak havoc in our community,” he said.

Four of the five individual charged today are presently in custody either in the county jail or in prison while the fifth, Archie Lee Williams, remains at large. They will be arraigned in 67th and 68th District Courts where pretrials and preliminary examinations will be scheduled. by Rhonda S. Sanders


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