A 20-year-old Tucson man arrested in connection with a convenience-store robbery spree in the spring of 2011 was sentenced to 4.5 years in prison and seven years of intensive probation Friday in Pima County Superior Court.

Joseph Slay-Hernandez pleaded guilty last month to four counts of armed robbery and one count of aggravated assault on an incapacitated victim. He admitted robbing four convenience store clerks on May 26, 2011, and assaulting another victim June 11, 2011, while the man was bound, restrained or unable to resist, court documents indicate.

Under the terms of his plea agreement, Slay-Hernandez could have received up to 52 years in prison.

Judge Casey McGinley cited Slay-Hernandez’s mental health issues, age and acceptance of responsibility as reasons for the mitigated sentence.

McGinley also took into consideration one of Slay-Hernandez’s co-defendants brought a gun to what would have been simple beer runs and all of his co-defendants were offered probation-eligible plea agreements.

If Slay-Hernandez violates his probation, he could receive up to 28 years in prison.

Senior Editor, News, Arizona Daily Star, Tucson, Az.

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