KANSAS CITY, MO (USDOJ.Today) A Kansas City, Missouri, man has been charged in federal court for his role in a conspiracy to commit at least seven armed robberies of local businesses, primarily fast food restaurants.
Chase M. Murphy, 19, was charged in a three-count criminal complaint filed under seal in the U.S. District Court in Kansas City, Mo., on Tuesday, Aug. 4. That complaint was unsealed and made public today upon his arrest and initial court appearance. Murphy remains in federal custody pending a detention hearing.
The federal criminal complaint alleges that Murphy participated in a conspiracy to commit a series of armed robberies of local businesses from May 28 to July 12, 2019. Murphy is also charged with one count of robbing the Taco Bell at 5925 Independence Ave., Kansas City, Mo., at gunpoint on May 28, 2019. The complaint also charges Murphy with brandishing firearms during a crime of violence.
According to an affidavit filed in support of the federal criminal complaint, a brick was thrown through the drive-through window of the Taco Bell on May 28, 2019, shattering the glass. Murphy and a co-conspirator, both carrying handguns, allegedly entered the restaurant through the broken window. They pointed their guns at the heads of two employees, the affidavit says, and ordered one to open the cash register. They took $300 from the register and fled through the broken window.
The affidavit cites six additional armed robberies, including
• Burger King, 1102 E. 47th St., Kansas City, Mo., on June 18, 2019;
• Family Dollar, 1201 E. Meyer Blvd., Kansas City, Mo., on June 25, 2019;
• McDonald’s, 6996 Eastwood Trafficway, Kansas City, Mo., on June 26, 2019;
• McDonald’s, 6701 E. Front St., Kansas City, Mo., on June 28, 2019;
• Taco Bell, 5925 Independence Ave., Kansas City, Mo., on July 1, 2019;
• Taco Bell, 4017 Blue Ridge Cutoff, Kansas City, Mo., on July 1, 2019.
On July 12, 2019, police officers in Raytown, Missouri, responded to a suspicious vehicle that was parked with its lights off. When officers arrived, the driver of the 2003 Ford Escape turned on the vehicle’s lights, placed the vehicle in drive, and accelerated toward and then around the patrol vehicle. Officers pursued the vehicle until it struck a wall and became disabled. The driver and two passengers – one of whom was Murphy – attempted to flee on foot. They were arrested by officers, who also searched the Escape and found two handguns.
The charges contained in this complaint are simply accusations, and not evidence of guilt. Evidence supporting the charges must be presented to a federal trial jury, whose duty is to determine guilt or innocence.
This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Ashleigh A. Ragner. It was investigated by the Kansas City, Mo., Police Department and the Raytown, Mo., Police Department.
Operation LeGend is a federal partnership with local law enforcement to address the increase in homicides and violent crime in Kansas City, Mo., in 2020. The operation honors the memory of four-year-old LeGend Taliferro, one of the youngest fatalities during a record-breaking year of homicides and shootings. Additional federal agents were assigned to the operation from the FBI, Drug Enforcement Administration, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and the U.S. Marshals Service.