Robber gets 41 years

WARREN – A 21-year-old local man was sentenced to 41 years behind bars Wednesday after a jury found him guilty last week of a home invasion in Warren in which a mother and son were robbed inside their home then taken to an ATM machine to get more money.

Taylor Ervin-Williams apologized to the court and to his parents. ”I wasn’t raised this way,” he told Trumbull County Common Pleas Judge Ronald Rice, who spelled out a long list of charges and firearm specifications, many of them to run consecutively.

A jury took only one hour to find Ervin-Williams guilty of a seven-count indictment that included charges of aggravated burglary, aggravated robbery, and two counts of kidnapping – all with three-year mandatory firearm specifications.

Ervin-Williams also was convicted on charges of tampering with evidence, failure to comply with the order or signal of a police officer, and having weapons while under disability since indictments point out that he was previously convicted of a burglary in 2011.

Minutes before Rice sentenced him, Judge W. Wyatt McKay gave Ervin-Williams five years on the probation violation charged against him after he was arrested on the home invasion that occurred last February.

Assistant county prosecutor Chris Becker had asked Rice for a 65-year sentence in a memorandum turned in earlier to the court.

Reiko Williamson and her son, Bryce Humphrey, were forced to drive Ervin-Williams to the ATM near the Hot Dog Shoppe. Once there, the gunman got about $300 from the victim’s account. He took another $40 after breaking into their Charles Street S.E.home Feb. 22.

The victims eventually ran away and called police, leaving Ervin-Williams with their car and a chance to make a short-lived getaway that was captured on dash cameras in a police cruiser that gave chase.

Officers spotted the stolen car near the Charles Street S.E. home and chased it through the downtown area, before Ervin-Williams jumped out of the car near the intersection of Belmont and Prospect Street N.W.

During the chase, he threw a gun out of the car. The revolver was eventually retrieved and the defendant’s DNA showed up on the gun, according to testimony at trial.

Officers tracked Ervin-Williams to his home at 354 Belmont, where they said he entered and sneaked into an adjoining apartment at 352 Belmont.

Becker praised Williamson and her son, calling them very credible victims who testified perfectly despite going through a horrible ordeal.

Williamson thanked employees at the Hot Dog shoppe for helping her and her son the night of the crime and when they ran from Ervin-Williams.

”All I can say is that I’ve prayed for you, young man. You might not care, you might not want my prayers, but you’ve already gotten them. And you’ll get more of them going forward,” Williamson wrote in an impact statement that was read in court by a member of the county Prosecutor’s Office.

Williamson thanked police, prosecutors and court personnel who worked on the case.

”I could never be happy that another young man is becoming part of the prison system. That another young man has lost a piece of his future to the streets and jail. I don’t presume to know what your life has been like and why you made the choices that you did, but I certainly which that you’d made different choices for sure,” the statement read.