Eight area robberies net Florence man 191 year sentence

From the US States Attorney's Office:

Columbia, South Carolina---- United States Attorney Bill Nettles stated today that Malcolm Robert Lee Melvin, age 21, of Florence, South Carolina, was sentenced March 13, 2012, in federal court in Florence after having been found guilty of one count of conspiracy, eight counts of armed robbery and eight counts of using a firearm during the commission of a crime of violence.  United States District Judge R. Bryan Harwell sentenced Melvin to 2298 months, as well as presided over his three-day trial, which commenced December 12, 2011.

Evidence presented at the trial established that Melvin and his co-defendants, all of whom pled guilty prior to Melvin's trial, committed a string of robberies in Florence and Darlington Counties, as well one located in St. Matthews and one in Bowman, South Carolina, during the last week of June, 2010.

Melvin and his co-defendants were members of a part of the Bloods street gang known as the Rolling 20's Red Scorpion Neighborhood Bloods, loosely based out of the Florence and Darlington County areas.   Judge Harwell previously sentenced Timothy Eugene Ham, age 21, Reginald Gerard McClair, age 21, and Travis Darrell Haynes, age 21, each to 32 years imprisonment, and Jaquan Brooks, age 20, to 19 years imprisonment for similar charges.

The case was investigated by the Florence Police Department, Florence County Sheriff's Office, Darlington Police Department, Darlington County Sheriff's Office, Calhoun County Sheriff's Office, Orangeburg County Sheriff's Department, Chesterfield County Sheriff's Office, Chesterfield Police Department, Pageland Police Department, SLED, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF).  Assistant United States Attorney Alfred "Buddy" Bethea of the Florence office handled prosecution of the case, as part of the joint federal, state and local Project CeaseFire initiative, which aggressively prosecutes firearm cases.