Calling him a "crime machine," a judge today sentenced a man who committed a series of robberies and attempted heists at businesses in Los Angeles, Beverly Hills and the San Fernando Valley to 620 years to life in state prison.
"You have someone who's basically a crime machine," Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Stephen A. Marcus said of 54-year-old Alonzo Harris, who is also known as Felton Bradford. "His entire life has been filled with crime."
Harris -- who has a string of convictions dating back more than three decades -- was convicted last September of more than three-dozen counts, including robbery, attempted robbery, false imprisonment and possession of a firearm by a felon for crimes he committed between October 2007 and July 2008.
The judge said dozens of employees were "terrorized" in the series of robberies and attempted holdups that typically occurred at businesses in the middle of the night or early morning hours.
Harris was convicted along with co-defendant Floyd Nelson, 54, in a 6 a.m. attempted holdup at Lawry's The Prime Rib restaurant at 100 N. La Cienega Blvd. in Beverly Hills on July 11, 2008.
The two -- who had been under surveillance -- were followed by Los Angeles police from the eatery, and Nelson was shot by undercover officers minutes after a chef at Lawry's was approached at gunpoint and unsuccessfully ordered to open the safe.
Nelson was convicted of one count each of attempted robbery, conspiracy to commit robbery and being a felon in possession of a firearm for the attempted robbery at Lawry's, and was sentenced to 50 years to life in state prison. The judge noted that Nelson also has a lengthy criminal history that includes convictions for robbery and other crimes.
Deputy District Attorney Jack Garden told the judge that the two men "fall squarely" within what California's voters sought to do with the three- strikes law.
--City News Service