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Thursday, May 24, 2018
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Tampa man sentenced to 193 years for fast-food robberies

A 29-year-old Tampa man has been sentenced to nearly 200 years in federal prison for a series of armed robberies in three counties.

Demetrius Renaldo Bowers was sentenced to 193 years in prison Monday for eight armed robberies he committed in 2012 throughout the Tampa Bay area. Bowers, who was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Mary S. Scriven, was found guilty of 16 robbery and firearm offenses by a jury on June 26.

According to evidence at his trial, Bowers used a black semi-automatic handgun to rob eight fast-food franchise restaurants between Sept. 23 and Nov. 4, 2012, in Hillsborough, Pinellas, and Hernando counties as the businesses were closing, according to a release from the U.S. Attorney A. Lee Bailey III.

Bowers, wearing a black ski mask, would smash the window of the business with a concrete block and then hold the employees at gunpoint while demanding money, the release said.

After the robbery of a Papa John's restaurant off of Gunn Highway in Tampa, investigators recovered the ski mask, according to the release. DNA from the ski mask matched Bowers, and investigators obtained other evidence that also identified him as a suspect in other armed robberies.

The investigating agencies were the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office, Tampa Police Department, Largo Police Department and Hernando County Sheriff's Office.

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