Two Red Bank men face long prison sentences after being convicted last week in a 2007 armed robbery of a West Side jewelry store in which the owner, his wife and year-old son were menaced at gunpoint.

Call in the authorities

The verdict, announced Monday by the Monmouth County Prosecutor's office, was one of two handed down last Thursday by separate juries hearing testimony in unrelated armed robbery cases out of Red Bank. (See story below for details on the other matter.)

Convicted after a two-week trial were Michael Livingston, 23, and Carlos Delevry, 21.

According to an account from the prosecutor's office, Livingston and Delevry entered the Little Diamond jewelry store on Shrewsbury Avenue at around 4:15p on July 18, 2007. There, they engaged the owner in a discussion about a piece of jewelry one of the two men said he was interested in buying for his girlfriend.

The owner gave the man a photocopied picture of the piece in a catalog.

According to the prosecutor's office, the two men left but soon returned, and within one minute Livingston lifted his shirt to reveal a pistol in his waistband.

From the prosecutor's narrative of events:

Delevry then removed the weapon from Livingston's waistband, pointed the gun at the storeowner and announced that it was a robbery.  Delevry opened the barrel of the revolver, showing the storeowner that it was loaded with five bullets. Livingston then went into the store’s adjoining office and removed the storeowner’s 33-year old wife and one-year old son. While Delevry held all three victims at gunpoint, Livingston searched the office, took a quantity of cash, and returned to the victims to demand more money.  When the robbers were told that there was no additional money in
the store, Livingston threatened the victims, telling them to think of their son, while
Delevry cocked the hammer on the pistol.  Simultaneously, a customer entered the
business, at which time Delevry discreetly placed the gun into his waistband.  The two
robbers then walked out of the store, inadvertently leaving behind the photocopied catalog page.

Analysis of the prints by the New Jersey State Police and the forensics and technical services unit of the prosecutor's office "revealed that they matched those of Livingston and Delevry," according to the announcement. In addition, both the storeowner and his wife identified Livingston and Delevry in court as their assailants.

The defendants are scheduled to be sentenced May 29 by Superior Court Judge Anthony
J. Mellaci, Jr. Each faces up to 35 years in prison.

"This violent armed robbery, committed against a couple and their one year old child, was solved as a result of the quick response and professionalism of the Red Bank Police Department," Prosecutor Luis Valentin said in a prepared statement. "As a result of these exemplary forensic and investigative efforts, Livingston and Delevry will be punished for the terror they inflicted upon their victims."

The Little Diamond was robbed at gunpoint again last month by two black males in their 40s who police said had arranged to meet with the owner to sell some gold coins. No arrests have been made in that incident.

Here's the press release: Download 040609c

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