News Release Date: July 13, 2016
Contact: NPS Investigative Services Branch, (202) 379-4761
Man pleads guilty to armed assault near the Gateway Arch
A federal judge has accepted a guilty plea on multiple charges stemming from armed assault and robberies committed last September within Jefferson National Expansion Memorial.
According to court documents, on September 25, 2015 at about 10:30 pm, Kilwa Jones confronted a man and woman as they walked back to their car after a St. Louis Cardinals baseball game. Jones brandished a 9mm semi-automatic pistol at the couple and demanded their property. As the victims attempted to ignore Jones and continue to their vehicle, Jones shot the man in the back. Jones then forcibly grabbed the woman’s purse, rifled the man's pants pockets as he lay paralyzed on the ground, jumped into a car and drove away.
Jones committed the crimes in the northbound lanes of Memorial Drive near the Old Cathedral and Gateway Arch - within the boundaries of the national memorial. An ISB Special Agent and the Law Enforcement Specialist of the memorial were instrumental in determining jurisdiction for the incident, and in ensuring the case was accepted and prosecuted by the US Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of Missouri. The detective bureau of the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department investigated the case in cooperation with the National Park Service.
Jones pleaded guilty to assault with a dangerous weapon while on federal property, possession of a firearm in furtherance of a crime of violence, two counts of robbery while on federal property, and being a felon in possession of a firearm. Under the plea agreement, Jones faces a penalty of up to 35 years in prison and/or fines of up to $250,000 on each count.
Sentencing is expected to take place in October.