Man sentenced to life in prison for Mississippi coin shop triple murder
Published 5:02 pm Monday, March 21, 2022
A Biloxi man was sentenced to three life sentences for discharging a firearm during the commission of a robbery that killed three people, announced U.S. Attorney Darren J. LaMarca and Special Agent in Charge Jermicha Fomby of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
Joshua Michael Garcia, 42, was sentenced today in U.S. District Court in Jackson. Garcia was further ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $35,070.40.
According to court documents, Garcia and co-defendant Jamison Layne Townsend went to Bill’s Coin & Jewelry in Jackson on December 17, 2016, to rob the business by firearm. During the robbery, Garcia shot and killed the owner and two co-workers. He and Townsend emptied the display cases of watches, rings, necklaces, bracelets, coins, and other items. Later that day, Garcia and Townsend entered a pawn shop in Mobile, Alabama, and pawned five items that were stolen from Bill’s earlier that day.
On December 19, 2016, a trooper with the Tennessee Highway Patrol attempted to stop Garcia and Townsend who were traveling in a red Dodge Charger on Interstate 24. A chase ensued and Garcia and Townsend escaped at a high rate of speed. Two days later, Garcia and Townsend were arrested in Geary County, Kansas. Officers searched the Charger and found numerous items that were stolen from Bill’s, including coins, watches, trays of jewelry, and many items that still contained the sales tags from Bill’s. Additionally, four firearms, including a Les Baer. 45 caliber handgun (determined to be the murder weapon by the Mississippi State Crime Laboratory), ammunition, a cell phone, and numerous items of clothing were also recovered from the Charger.
Garcia pleaded guilty on December 15, 2021, to discharging a firearm that resulted in the murder of three persons during the commission of a robbery.
This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Jackson Police Department with assistance from Geary County, Kansas, Sherriff’s Department, the Tennessee Highway Patrol, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, the Mississippi State Crime Laboratory, the United States Marshal’s Service, the Gulfport Police Department, and the Biloxi Police Department.
The case was prosecuted by Deputy Chief Erin Chalk.