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June 13, 2013

Attorney appointed in armed robbery case

GREENVILLE — An attorney has been appointed for a Grayson County man, charged in connection with the alleged armed robbery of a Greenville convenience store.

Mark Anthony Young had filed a writ of habeas corpus from the Hunt County Jail, where he remains in custody in lieu of $150,000 bond, charged with one count of aggravated robbery with a deadly weapon.

During a Wednesday hearing in the 196th District Court, Judge Steve Tittle appointed an attorney to represent Young on the writ. No additional hearings were immediately scheduled.

Young, formerly of Greenville, was charged with arson fires 17 years ago at two of the city’s predominantly black churches.

Young, 35, whose most recent address was in Sherman, was arrested following a reported hold-up on the morning of May 16 at a store at 1700 Stonewall Street in Greenville, during which he was alleged to have displayed a weapon and demanded money.

In March 1997, Young pleaded guilty to a federal charge of arson in connection with the June 16, 1996 fire at the Church of the Living God in Greenville.

As part of a plea agreement, U.S. Judge Sidney Fitzwater sentenced Young to the eight months he had already served in federal custody and a separate federal charge, alleging Young set the June 9, 1996 arson fire at the New Light House of Prayer in Greenville, was dismissed, as was a pending state level arson charge concerning a set fire at a local residence that same summer.

Young was reported to have an IQ of 53, although he was found to be mentally competent to stand trial prior to the plea hearing.

Young pleaded guilty in 2001 to four counts of aggravated robbery with a deadly weapon and two counts of unauthorized use of a motor vehicle. Young was alleged to have committed armed hold-ups at local convenience stores on four occasions between Dec. 13, 2000 and Jan. 4, 2001 and to have stolen two vehicles from Greenville automobile dealerships during the summer of 2000.

Young was sentenced to 12 years in prison and two years in state jail for the convictions.

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.

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