Man sentenced to 28 years in prison after firing at troopers following a series of armed robberies

Local News

D’Angelo Antonio Coakley

CHARLESTON COUNTY, S.C. (WCBD) – A 30-year-old man who lead authorities in a high-speed chase and fired at them following a series of armed robberies has pleaded guilty in federal court.

D’Angelo Antonio Coakley of Mount Pleasant was sentenced to 24 years in federal prison via teleconference on Friday, according to United States Attorney Peter M. McCoy, Jr.

Officials say Coakley and three others conspired to commit multiple armed robberies of businesses, including a Dollar General Store in Awendaw, a Verizon Store in Summerville, and a Verizon Store in Waxhaw, North Carolina back in 2017.

Along with the co-defendants: Julius Hamilton Washington, 29, of Summerville; Malik Juwan Gadist, 23, of Mount Pleasant; and Paul Anthony Walker, 24, of Goose Creek, all four were indicted back in 2018 for robbing the businesses and employees at gunpoint.

McCoy said the string of robberies ended shortly after the four robbed the Verizon Store in Waxhaw on February 10, 2017.

He said the four held the store employee at gunpoint while they stole cell phones and electronic devices from the store’s safe. 

They were later tracked from North Carolina into South Carolina, where Troopers with the South Carolina Highway Patrol located their car and attempted a traffic stop.

Instead, the four took off at a high rate of speed and fired at the troopers.

No Troopers were hit by the shots, and the pursuing Troopers were eventually able to push the defendants’ car into a median where it crashed, and all four defendants fled.

McCoy said investigators were able to identify each defendant and determine their involvement in the crimes.

Coakley is the third defendant to be sentenced for the crimes.  Walker was previously sentenced to 10 years imprisonment, Gadist was sentenced to 15 years imprisonment, and Washington has yet to be sentenced.

United States District Court Judge David C. Norton sentenced Coakley to 288 months in federal prison, to be followed by a five-year term of court-ordered supervision.

The sentencing was conducted virtually by telephone under the CARES Act passed by Congress last month, so that the parties did not appear in the courtroom amid the coronavirus pandemic.

“It’s important for those who choose to commit crimes to know that even in the pandemic the U.S. Attorney’s Office is open for business,” said U.S. Attorney McCoy. “We will hold those who break the law accountable.”

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