A federal judge yesterday ordered David Turner, 52, released from his sentence for conspiring to rob an Easton armored-car depot, a plot spoiled because one of the plotters turned out to be working with the FBI - which moved in before the group could give Ben Affleck any ideas for a movie, the US Attorney's office reports.
Turner was convicted in 2003 on a variety of conspiracy and weapons charges, including - crucially for yesterday's ruling - possession of a grenade in furtherance of a crime of violence, which at the time was a separate federal crime with a mandatory sentence of 30 years, which had to be served in addition to any other sentences, for his role in what was supposed to be a $50-million job on Super Bowl Sunday, 1999.
At the time, a judge sentenced Turner to a total of 38 years in federal prison. But in June of this year, the US Supreme Court redefined just what a "crime of violence" was, in part by ruling that conspiring to commit such a crime no long qualified as a crime of violence. And since the FBI swooped in and prevented Turner from using his grenade to help rob the Loomis-Fargo depot, he needed to be resentenced.
The US Attorney's office asked US District Court Judge Richard G. Stearns to re-sentence Turner to nearly 26 years in prison, which, since he had been in custody since 1992, would mean he might have to stay behind bars until 2025. Instead, however, Stearns re-sentenced Turner to time served, with three years of probation.