3 arrests in Philadelphia for Michigan jewelry heists

Lauren Abdel-Razzaq
The Detroit News

Three more members of the Philadelphia-based armed robbery crew involved in two Michigan jewelry store heists were charged Tuesday, according to unsealed federal court documents.

Charges were filed against Philadelphia residents David Briley, 45, Shaheed Calhoun, 35, and Orlando Johnson, 40, in the April 22 armed robberies of Medawar Jewelers in Grand Rapids and Tapper’s Diamonds and Fine Jewelry in West Bloomfield. They join Nathaniel Pembrook, 42, who was initially charged in September related to the same robberies.

All four men have been charged with interference with commerce by robbery, possession of a firearm in furtherance of a crime of violence, conspiracy to interfere with commerce by robbery and being a felon in possession of a firearm. If convicted on all charges, they face up to life in federal prison.

The four were arrested in Pennsylvania. Pembrook is in Michigan awaiting trial. Johnson, Briley and Calhoun are to be extradited to Detroit for arraignment.

According to the unsealed indictment, Briley, Calhoun, Johnson and Pembrook entered the stores during business hours with their faces covered or partially covered and brandished a firearm while ordering employees and customers to the floor. During the robbery at Medawar Jewelers, Pembrook was shot in the arm by one of the store owners. Blood was recovered at the scene and DNA testing confirmed it was Pembrook’s.

The case was investigated by the West Bloomfield Police Department, the Kent County Sheriff’s Department and the Oakland County Gang and Violent Crimes Task Force, and other agencies.

“This case is an excellent example of the value of collaboration by federal, state and local law enforcement,” said U.S. Attorney Barbara L. McQuade. “We are grateful for the diligence of all of our partners in investigating this case so that these charges could be filed."


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