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Young Repeat Offender Gets Long Sentence in South Philly Armed Robbery

(In this surveillance image, Tracey Thomas, right, holds a gun while committing an armed robbery inside a Point Breeze bar.)

(In this surveillance image, Tracey Thomas, right, holds a gun while committing an armed robbery inside a Point Breeze bar.)

Hanson_Tony--NEW Tony Hanson
Tony Hanson has spent his entire illustrious career at KYW Newsradio,...
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By Tony Hanson

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — A Philadelphia judge has imposed a stiff sentence — 17½ to 37 years in prison — on a young repeat offender convicted of a brazen gunpoint bar robbery in 2010.

Prosecutor Nicole Pedicino says 22-year-old Tracey Thomas was convicted of the robbery that was caught on tape inside the Crab Bar, on South 21st Street in the Point Breeze section of the city.

Thomas is seen holding a gun as he robs the victim, who was not injured but was reluctant to testify against this repeat offender from the neighborhood.

“The complainant picked the defendant out of a photo array that evening,” Pedicino says.  “At the preliminary hearing he did not identify the defendant. He did testify at trial identifying him again, and was candid with the jury in stating why he was scared to identify him at the preliminary hearing.”

Pedicino says Thomas refused to accept responsibility or show remorse even when confronted with the tape at trial.

“This is an area in South Philadelphia that has had issues with gun violence, and this is a defendant who was so brazen to pull out a gun in a public place and rob someone at gunpoint,” she says.  “And at no point had we heard any kind of remorse or responsibility for anything he did.”

Pedicino says this was Thomas’ fourth arrest as an adult, following eight arrests as a juvenile — his first when he was just 12 years old.

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