A 20-year-old man was given six life sentences Thursday for his role in two robberies at McDonald’s restaurants in The Woodlands last year.
Justin Maurice Harris, of Conroe, was charged with six counts of aggravated robbery for jumping through the drive-thru windows at two separate McDonald’s locations in The Woodlands, where he and accomplices pointed semi-automatic pistols at employees while demanding money and access to the safe.
During one of the robberies, they shot multiple rounds at civilian witnesses who followed them to try and get their license plate number.
Harris pleaded guilty in the 435th state District Court in Montgomery County and was sentenced by Judge Michael Seiler.
“This sentence sends a very strong message that if you commit a violent crime in Montgomery County you will be punished accordingly,” Assistant District Attorney Shanna Redwine said in a press release. “I appreciate all of the hard work of law enforcement in bringing Mr. Harris to justice.”
The other two people involved in the robberies still have not been located by police.
Detectives with the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Department Major Crimes Division investigated the case and worked with the Houston Police Department Gang Unit and Robbery Unit to develop Harris as a suspect.
His cell phone records and ballistics from the bullets recovered from the scene linked Harris to the robberies after he was arrested in Harris County in possession of the gun used in the Montgomery County robberies. Officers with the Houston Police Department were able to identify Justin Harris from surveillance video collected from McDonalds.
During the punishment hearing, Harris admitted to being involved in selling drugs, being a gang member, committing multiple other robberies, and being present at multiple shooting incidents. Since Harris used a firearm in the felony offense, he will not be eligible for parole until he serves half of his 99 year sentence.
The six 99-year sentences will run concurrently.