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Pair sentenced in string of Fayetteville Taco Bell robberies

Posted January 8, 2014

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— Two men have been sentenced to more than 14 years in federal prison for a string of robberies of Taco Bell restaurants in Fayetteville in 2012, authorities said Wednesday.

William Franklin Byford III, 33, of Bunnlevel, was sentenced to 171 months in prison, and Christopher Dean Gilbert, 24, of Fayetteville, was sentenced to 181 months in prison.

Both men pleaded guilty in October to conspiracy to interfere with interstate commerce and using a firearm in a violent crime.

Gilbert, who previously worked as a Taco Bell manager, robbed Taco Bell restaurants on Raeford Road, Ramsey Street and Cedar Creek Road between Oct. 18 and Dec. 6, 2012, authorities said. The Raeford Road restaurant was held up twice.

Byford, who is paralyzed and in a wheelchair, served as the getaway driver in a car that was modified so he could operate it by hand, authorities said.


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