Two Durham men were convicted by a federal court jury Monday of attacking a woman and threatening to drown a child during an attempt to rob a nightclub owner at his Morrisville home on March 16, 2015, the U.S. Attorney’s office said.
James Thorpe, 25, and Joshua Melvin, 23, were convicted of conspiring to commit a robbery that involves interstate commerce, which violates a federal law called the Hobbs Act. The jury also found them guilty of firing a gun during a crime of violence and having a gun during a robbery.
The crime happened at the home of one of the owners of the Vegas NightLife club on Capital Boulevard in Raleigh.
Prosecutors said Thorpe and Melvin had put a GPS tracking device on the man’s car to find out where he lived, then broke into the house in the 3000 block of Bristol Creek.
The robbers threatened to drown a young girl if they were not given money from the club’s proceeds, prosecutors said. The two had taken the girl from her mother’s arms, the attorney’s office stated.
The man they were trying to rob was shot, then jumped from a second-floor window, the government said. Thorpe and Melvin then drove away with police in pursuit.
The nightclub is considered to be involved in interstate commerce, the U.S. Attorney’s office said, giving federal officials jurisdiction in the case.
The club buys and sells products shipped between states and can be visited by people from other states.
Morrisville initially said they were looking for four men.
Thorpe and Melvin are scheduled to be sentenced March 6.