DNA sends 19 year old to prison for 10.5 years followed by lifetime probation
FLORENCE, AZ (11/12/13) – On October 29, 2013, Shakir Thomas, 19 of Maricopa, arrived at Arizona Department of Corrections to begin his term of 10.5 years of prison after pleading guilty to kidnapping, attempted sexual assault and attempted burglary. Following prison, Thomas faces consecutive sentences of lifetime probation and an additional 5 years of probation.
The case began on March 8, 2013, when Thomas broke into a Maricopa residence, burglarized the home, detained and attempted to sexually assault one of the female occupants. Maricopa Police Department responded and investigated the incident.
On March 16, 2013, the Maricopa Police Department responded to a noise complaint call. Once MPD officers arrived on scene, items reported stolen from the open March 8 case were observed along with drugs. One of the subjects present, identified as Shakir Thomas, had physical descriptors matching the reported sexual assault suspect.
After consulting with the Pinal County Attorney’s Office and obtaining a DNA search warrant for Thomas, DNA was collected. Due to Thomas’ threat potential and being an investigative lead in the incident on March 8, County Attorney Lando Voyles contacted several State and local agency’s crime labs to determine if a 24-hour turnaround DNA test could be conducted.
After contacting these labs, they discovered a backlog of samples waiting to be tested with no clear timeframe in getting results. Since Thomas was only held on lesser charges stemming from the incident on March 16, the possibility of Thomas being released on bail was discussed and Pinal County Attorney Voyles found it necessary and in the best interest of the community’s safety to contract a private laboratory to get the results in 24 hours. After the DNA test was conducted and a positive match was confirmed; Thomas was charged with sexual assault and possession of stolen property.
On September 23, Shakir Thomas plead guilty to attempted 1st degree burglary, kidnapping of a dangerous nature, and attempted sexual assault and was sentenced on October 21, 2013.
Pinal County Attorney Lando Voyles stated, “This office will bring to bear every resource and the full weight of the law to administer justice on those depraved individuals who prey upon the innocent through violent crimes, including sexual assaults! Crimes involving, even attempted, sexual assaults are horrendous and have long-lasting effects on the victims. The danger these individuals like Thomas pose to our children and families is too high to not expedite DNA testing while he remained in custody. At times, standing up to protect our communities comes at a heightened cost. I make no apologies for spending over $10,000 to connect a suspect, in this case, Shakir Thomas, to these crimes. No monetary cost will ever offset the value of our Pinal residents and no impediment keeps this office from working to ensure the safety of our Pinal families."
For more information, contact Jim Knupp at 520.866.6573 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.