Arlington, VA

(Updated at 3:20 p.m.) Two men have been sentenced for the Christmas Day armed robbery of a South Arlington gas station.

Arlington residents Earl Brown, 28, and Liban Jama, 24, were convicted of a brazen daytime hold-up at a gas station convenience store on the 4100 block of Four Mile Run Drive. The crime took place around 12:15 p.m. on December 25, 2011.

According to a police report, Jama entered the store, brandished a handgun, and demanded money and cigarettes from the cashier. With the stolen goods in hand, he then hopped into a getaway car driven by Brown.

The pair started to drive away but were pulled over and arrested three blocks away, thanks to a witness who called police while watching them flee.

“The midday robbery occurred just after noon on Christmas Day and drew numerous police officers to the area with guns drawn in an effort to arrest the two as they tried to flee the scene,” said Theo Stamos, Commonwealth’s Attorney for Arlington County.

An Arlington jury sentenced Brown to 11 years in the penitentiary on an armed robbery charge and 3 years on a weapons charge. Jama was sentenced to 7 years for armed robbery and 3 years on a weapons charge.

The case was prosecuted by Chief Deputy Commonwealth’s Attorney Molly Newton and Assistant Commonwealth’s attorney D. Scott Porter over the course of a three day jury trial. The court is expected to hold a final sentencing hearing for the case on August 24.

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