MACON, Ga. (WSAV) – A Macon man was sentenced to life in prison Thursday after jurors found him guilty of robbing a smoke shop in 2018.
Benjamin Lanier Statham, 35, was found guilty of armed robbery. He will not be eligible for parole until he has served at least 30 years.
The robbery happened on July 7, 2018 at the Just One More Smoke Shop on Riverside Drive at about 3 a.m. An employee says a masked man pointed a gun at her and demanded money from the cash register, then left.
The employee says she recognized Statham’s voice because he was a regular to the store. Another witness, a customer, and a surveillance video corroborated the employee’s account of the robbery.
“Mr. Statham thought he could escape justice by hiding behind a mask,” District Attorney David Cooke said. “But the jury wasn’t fooled by his attempt to disguise his identity as the perpetrator of this reckless and dangerous crime.”