A Pawtucket man has been sentenced to 15 years behind bars in connection to a 2021 violent home invasion in Johnston. His alleged accomplice has never been identified.
Rhode Island Attorney General Peter F. Neronha announced Tuesday that Deven Guernon, 25, of Pawtucket, was sentenced in Providence County Superior Court to serve 15 years at the Adult Correctional Institutions (ACI).
Guernon pleaded to participating in the violent home invasion on Atwood Avenue in which a 30-year-old man was shot and stabbed several times, according to a press release from Neronha’s office.
“Detectives from the Johnston Police Department worked very diligently with the members of the Rhode Island Attorney General’s Office to ensure that the defendant was brought to justice,” said Johnston Police Chief Joseph P. Razza. “I am very grateful for the work of the Attorney General's office in prosecuting this matter and particularly proud of the work done by the detectives who worked to identify and arrest this criminal. The conviction and sentence will help to restore the sense safety once again.”
Guernon “entered a plea of nolo contendere to one count of assault with a dangerous weapon with intent to rob, one count of first-degree robbery, and two counts of conspiracy,” according to the press release.
He was sentenced at a hearing on Nov. 4, before Superior Court Justice Robert D. Krause. Guernon was sentenced “to 30 years, with 15 years to serve at the ACI, and a 15-year suspended sentence with 30 years of probation,” according to Neronha’s office.
“When every Rhode Islander comes home and shuts the door behind them, their entirely reasonable expectation is that they are safe, and that any visitors, even the unexpected, will arrive with only good intentions,” Neronha said. “The defendant here flouted that principle, and to the extreme. To invade another’s home, armed with gun and knife, with the intent to steal the property of the homeowner, is simply outrageous. Such conduct deserves a heavy prison sentence, and I am grateful that the Court handed one down today. I am also grateful to the men and women of Johnston Police Department for their outstanding work during the investigation of this case.”
Johnston Police Detectives Anthony Sasso, John Deangelis, and Mark Bairos investigated the case, and Assistant Attorney General John Perrotta led the investigation and prosecution.
Had the case proceeded to trial, the prosecution “was prepared to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that during the early morning hours of Jan. 10, 2021, the defendant, along with an unidentified co-conspirator, broke into a residence in Johnston, where they shot and stabbed a 30-year-old male occupant before fleeing,” according to the press release.
Around 3:45 a.m., “the defendant and the unidentified co-conspirator broke into a residence on Atwood Avenue, in an attempt to steal marijuana and cash,” according to the Attorney General’s office. “During the robbery, they encountered the lone occupant and fought with him, slashing the victim several times with a knife in the chest, arm, and face. The fight ended abruptly when the co-conspirator shot the victim in his left thigh with a .40 caliber semi-automatic handgun, causing serious injuries that later required surgery. The defendants stole approximately $1,000 in cash and a cell phone from the residence before fleeing. The firearm used in the shooting was never recovered.”
According to Neronha’s office, following an investigation, Johnston Police Detectives identified Guernon as a suspect.
Later that month, he was arrested in Denver, Colorado and then extradited back to Rhode Island for prosecution.
In June, the Statewide Grand Jury returned an indictment charging Guernon with many more charges: one count of assault with a dangerous weapon in a dwelling with the intent to rob, one count of burglary, one count of first-degree robbery, one count of discharging a firearm when committing a crime of violence (burglary, robbery, and assault with a dangerous weapon) resulting in injury, one count of possession of a pistol without a license, one count of conspiracy to commit assault with a dangerous weapon in a dwelling with the intent to rob, one count of conspiracy to commit a burglary, one count of conspiracy to commit a robbery, one count of conspiracy to discharge a firearm during crimes of violence, and one count of conspiracy to possess a pistol without a license.
Police are still searching for Guernon’s alleged accomplice.
“We and other agencies are still actively looking for an accomplice and if the public has any information to aid our investigation they are encouraged to call us,” Razza said.
If you have any information for police, regarding the unidentified suspect, call the Johnston Police Department at 401-231-4210.