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June 13, 2014

Guilty plea, prison in armed robbery case

Mata also sentenced for meth possession

GREENVILLE — A local man has been sentenced to prison, after pleading guilty to an armed robbery indictment which alleged he used an assault rifle during a November hold-up.

Larry Michael Mata also pleaded guilty this week to being in possession of methamphetamine in June of last year.

Mata, 25, of Greenville, was indicted by the Hunt County grand jury in February on one count of aggravated robbery with a deadly weapon. Mata pleaded guilty to the charge during a hearing Wednesday in the 196th District Court.

Under a plea bargain arrangement, Mata was sentenced to 10 years in the Texas Department of Criminal Justice-Institutional Division. As a deadly weapon was found to have been used in the commission of the offense, Mata will have to spend at least half of the sentence, or five years, in custody before will be eligible to be considered for parole.

Mata was alleged in the aggravated robbery indictment to have used an assault rifle to threaten a male victim while in the course of stealing money in Greenville on Nov. 14, 2013.

Aggravated robbery is a first degree felony, punishable upon conviction by a maximum sentence of from five to 99 years to life in prison and an optional fine of up to $10,000.

Mata also pleaded guilty Wednesday morning to one count of possession of a controlled substance, namely methamphetamine, in an amount of between four and 200 grams. Mata was found to have been in possession of 36 grams of methamphetamine during a traffic stop by the Texas Department of Public Safety near the intersection of State Highways 34 and 276 on June 6, 2013.

Mata was also sentenced to 10 years in prison on the charge, with the sentences to run concurrently. Mata was facing a maximum sentence of up to 20 years in prison for a conviction on the drug count.

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