MURFREESBORO — Two men were recently convicted for an armed robbery that occurred on MTSU campus in September 2013, according to the MTSU University Police Department.
Cephus D. Spicer was found guilty of aggravated robbery, conspiracy to commit aggravated robbery and possession of a firearm on school property following a jury trial last week in Rutherford County Circuit Court.
Assistant District Attorneys Nathan Nichols and Allyson Abbott prosecuted the case on behalf of District Attorney General Jennings Jones.
Circuit Court Judge Royce Taylor, who presided over the trial, revoked Spicer’s bond at the request of Nichols after the verdicts were returned. Spicer is currently being held at the Rutherford County Adult Detention Center awaiting a sentencing hearing scheduled for Dec. 17. He faces between eight and 12 years in prison.
Marcus D. Preston, Spicer’s co-defendant, pleaded guilty Oct. 13 to criminal conspiracy to commit aggravated robbery. He was sentenced to four years in prison.
At around 2 a.m. Sept. 19, 2013, a female student was walking alone on campus when she was approached by Spicer and Preston, police said. Spicer displayed a handgun and took possession of the victim’s cell phone, iPad, backpack and other belongings. MTSU police officers later located Spicer and Preston on campus. MTSU detectives investigated, and the two were later charged. All of the victim’s items were recovered and returned.
“Mr. Spicer and Mr. Preston had no affiliation with MTSU, and it appeared their only reason for being on campus that morning was to rob an innocent victim,” MTSU Police Capt. Jason Wofford stated. “I would like to commend Generals Nichols and Abbott for their dedication and the successful prosecution of this case.”
MTSU Police Lt. Kimberly Rednour commended the university officers and detectives who worked on the case to ensure “that the suspects were brought to justice.”
Following the verdict, Nichols said, “aggravated robbery is an extremely dangerous crime. I hope the result of this case sends a message to anyone thinking of following in the footsteps of these two men that the district attorney’s office takes these offenses very seriously and will vigorously prosecute anyone who commits them.”