Keene man indicted on college robbery charge
Feb 07, 2013 (The Keene Sentinel - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) --
A Keene man who police say robbed a college student of his sweatshirt at gunpoint in November was recently indicted by a Cheshire County grand jury.
Justin Robinson, 22, whose address is listed as the Cheshire County jail in Keene, is charged with one felony count of robbery and three counts of felony criminal threatening.
An indictment is not an indication of guilt. It is a determination by a grand jury that there is enough evidence to go to trial.
Robinson was involved in two gun-related incidents in the early-morning hours of Nov. 17, according to an affidavit prepared by Keene police Detective Robert F. Collinsworth.
Robinson was reported to have brandished a handgun during a fight at a party at 85 Winchester St. about 1 a.m., according to court documents.
At about 2:45 a.m. that morning, police received a report that a man -- later identified as Robinson -- described as shirtless, thin and frantic, approached three students on the Keene State College campus near the dining hall, according to court documents.
Robinson then pulled out a gun, pointed it at them and demanded one of the three students give him a sweatshirt, according to court documents.
The college went into lockdown for about five hours afterward.
One of the alleged victims gave Robinson his sweatshirt, then Robinson apologized and offered to return it later and asked for his phone number, according to the affidavit. The alleged victim gave Robinson his number and Robinson then called him to verify the number, the affidavit said. Robinson's number was later traced back to his friend and roommate who was at the Winchester Street party, according to court documents.
Later that morning, police arrested Robinson, who was wearing the high school athletic sweatshirt he stole, according to court documents.
During a probable cause hearing in November, Robinson's public defender, Joseph Frankel, said the evidence against his client is a "strange set of facts," and said police haven't found a gun.
Frankel also asked Collinsworth during the hearing if he had listened to a call Robinson made from jail, in which he described guns pulled on him, or a 911 call Robinson made to police. Collinsworth said the 911 call was put into evidence and that the caller was "unintelligible" and dispatchers terminated the call.
Frankel filed a motion with the court to collect and save certain evidence, such as the cellphones of witnesses and the 911 call, so Robinson can later defend himself against the charges.
The court granted the preservation of some of the evidence requested in Frankel's motion, including police field and interview notes, 911 calls made to police, police radio calls from the night of the incident, samples collected and all forensic evidence.
The court denied the request of witnesses' personal cellphones, saying the state does not have control over people's personal items.
The court also said the release of video surveillance of the Keene State College campus the night of the incident is up to college officials.
Frankel has resigned from representing Robinson since he filed the motion in December, citing a conflict of interest, according to court documents.
Robinson's new court-appointed attorney, Matthew Glavey of New Ipswich, declined to comment about the case Wednesday.
Danielle Rivard can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 352-1234 ext. 1435. Follow her on Twitter @DRivardKS.
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