Woman Faces 16 Years For Role In Robbery Of Drug Dealer
By Mike Perleberg
Stephanie Thompson. File photo.
(Brookville, Ind.) – A Laurel woman who was an accomplice in an armed robbery has been convicted in Franklin County court.
The Franklin County Prosecutor’s Office says 20-year-old Stephanie Thompson was on trial January 29th and 30th before the jury convicted her of Robbery with a Deadly Weapon (level 3 felony). She now faces three up to 16 years at sentencing on February 21.
Thompson was part of an armed robbery of a 19-year-old man on January 29, 2017. The victim told investigators that Thompson had texted him asking to purchase marijuana. A meeting was set up at a location along U.S. 52 near the Whitewater Canal Trail.
Prosecutors said the victim got into Thompson’s car and they drove to Yellowbank Road. At some point, an unknown male hiding in the back of the vehicle grabbed the dealer from behind, placed a gun to his head, and demanded money, his cell phone, and a backpack.
After complying with the demands, the victim was told to exit the vehicle – but not after being threatened that he would be harmed if her reported the incident.
Regardless, the dealer reported the armed robbery to police a short time later. A warrant was issued for Thompson’s arrest and she was taken into custody about a week later. Thompson denied any involvement in the robbery.
Three eyewitnesses testified at trial that Thompson was present at the crime scene. Prosecutors also introduced as evidence the text messages Thompson had sent to set up the drug deal.
Testifying in her defense, Thompson continued to deny all involvement in the crime. She admitted to purchasing marijuana in the past at the same location, but said that the victim fabricated the robbery story as revenge for spurned advances.
Prosecutors said the man who wielded the gun during the robbery has yet to be identified. The case does remain open.
Thompson had previously been arrested as part of a large drug bust in Laurel in 2016.