Fairbanks man pleads guilty to robbery, sentenced to 15 years, six months

James Allen sits in court during a change of plea hearing in which he pled guilty to robbery in the first degree. (John Dougherty/KTVF)

FAIRBANKS, Alaska (KTVF) A Fairbanks man who was involved in a robbery in 2017 has pleaded guilty to robbery in the first degree and been sentenced to 15 years and six months in jail. James Arthur Allen, 23, was arrested in Tennessee and extradited to Alaska for his role in a robbery in November of 2017.

According to charging documents, Allen and three other co-defendants -- Latrell Washington, Madeline Montes de Oca, and Jason Montes de Oca -- attempted to rob who they thought was a drug dealer. Allen, Washington and Jason went into the house while Madeline waited in the car to be the getaway driver.

When the three entered the house, they pulled out a gun and made the man who answered the door lay on the floor. They then told a women in the house to give them weed and money. She told them that they didn’t have any. Charging documents say she was pleading with the men for the lives of her small children. They didn’t believe her, and forced their way into the children’s bedroom. When they realized there were only children there, the female reported that she overheard the robbers say, “it’s just kids, let’s get out of here.” The robbers then ran out of the house.

A short time later, the group got into a police chase. During the chase Allen and Jason jumped out of the back of the truck. Madeline, who was driving the vehicle, ended up running head on into a front loader. Washington and Madeline ended up being arrested after a short foot pursuit.

Allen pled guilty to the charge of robbery and all the other charges from his case were dropped. He was sentenced to 13 years for the robbery charge. He also admitted to violating probation conditions on two other cases which added two and a half years to his sentence.

Allen has been convicted of five felonies which contributed to his longer sentence.

According to deputy district attorney Andrew Baldock, Jason Montes de Oca was convicted of robbery in the first degree and sentenced to serve six years with two years suspended. He had no prior criminal history.

Madeline Montes de Oca, who is Jason’s sister, was convicted of burglary. Her sentence was conditioned on agreement to testify against codefendants at trial if necessary.

Washington is scheduled to be sentenced later this month.

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