Bates & Parsons Sentenced

Two local men have been sentenced on their charges in connection to a robbery that took place last year in Lee County, Virginia. According to court records, Lee County Circuit Court sentenced both Mark Edward Bates and Christopher Joe Parsons on charges of Robbing and Conspiring to Rob the Fast Mart located in Dot, Virginia.
Mr. Bates was sentenced to serve twenty years in the Virginia Penitentiary and Mr. Parsons was sentenced to serve eight years in the Virginia Penitentiary.
According to evidence presented by the Lee County Commonwealth Attorney, H. Fuller Cridlin, Mr. Bates had planned the robbery the night before it took place.
Bates and Parsons both entered the Fast Mart when it was devoid of customers, and then proceeded with the robbery, with Bates threatening the cashier with a BB gun that looked very much like a real pistol, while demanding money. Mr. Bates had already been banned from the business because of previously shoplifting from the store.
Cridlin stated, “The sentences imposed today reflect the serious nature of the crime which was, simply put, a planned, coordinated act of horrific violence. There is never an excuse to threaten someone with a firearm or simulated firearm. Such acts cause lifelong emotional trauma for victims. I want to thank our brave victim for her testimony and cooperation throughout this case. I also want to thank Lt. Bobbly Ellis and other members of the Lee County Sheriff’s Office for their outstanding investigative work.”

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