Jul. 30—URBANA — A Danville man, Courtland Rowell, Jr., 21, of the 900 block of Moore, has been sentenced to 114 months for obstruction of commerce by robbery and brandishing a firearm during and in relation to a crime of violence.
At Rowell's sentencing hearing, U.S. District Court Judge Colin S. Bruce sentenced Rowell to 30 months of imprisonment for the obstruction of commerce by robbery charge, and an additional 84 months for brandishing a firearm during and in relation to a crime of violence, according to a press release Thursday from the United States Department of Justice. Both sentences were ordered to be served consecutively. Rowell was also ordered to pay restitution to the victim of the offense.
The charges arose from a late-night robbery of the Casey's General Store at 845 E. Voorhees St. in Danville on June 3, 2019. Rowell and another individual entered the store wearing masks and dark clothing. Brandishing a firearm, Rowell ordered the store's employees to comply while his partner cleared out the register. Law enforcement was alerted to the robbery in progress and captured Rowell as he fled from the scene. Charges are still pending in the Central District of Illinois against another individual related to this offense.
Rowell pled guilty to the charges on March 18, 2021.
The Department of Justice's recent renewed commitment to Project Safe Neighborhoods establishes four fundamental principles to guide efforts to reduce violent crime: 1) build trust and legitimacy within communities; 2) invest in community-based prevention and intervention programs; 3) target enforcement and priorities to focus resources on identifying, investigating, and prosecuting the most significant drivers of gun violence and other violent crime; and, 4) measure results with the goal to reduce the level of violence in our communities and not to increase the number of arrests and prosecutions as if they were ends in themselves. For more information on the Project Safe Neighborhoods program visit https://www.justice.gov/psn.
The Danville Police Department and Vermilion County Sheriff's Office investigated the case. Assistant U.S. Attorney Bryan Freres represented the government in the prosecution in coordination with the Vermilion County State's Attorney's Office.