Man sentenced for robbing pizza delivery man
By Janice Gregorson
A young man who said he came to Rochester to have a better life was sentenced to more than four years in prison Monday for robbing a pizza delivery man at knifepoint this summer.
Olmsted District Judge Joseph Wieners ordered Jose Richard Pompa, 23, to serve 54 months in prison. He won't be eligible for release until after serving three years in prison.
Pompa pleaded guilty to robbery charges stemming from the July 15 robbery. He was one of two men charged with using a knife and bat to rob the delivery man at a Rochester apartment complex.
Defense attorney Julie Maxwell asked Wieners to depart from state guidelines and give Pompa a lighter sentence. She told the judge how Pompa had moved to Rochester to get away from a violent neighborhood in California. She said his father was murdered, and Pompa "fell into the whole criminal activity." "He came here to change," she said, but failed due to what she described as his long and severe history of substance abuse. Maxwell said his alcohol abuse contributed to his committing the robbery. Maxwell said Pompa needs help, not prison.
But Senior Assistant County Attorney Lisa Swenson said Pompa left California while on probation. She told the judge that Pompa was the one who held a knife to the delivery man's throat.
Pompa told Wieners he does want a better life.
"I had a lot of bad things going on in my life, and no one to help me," he said.
Wieners said the sentence is dictated by guidelines and state law and out of his control. He encouraged Pompa to take advantage of treatment and education programs in prison.