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Forum staff reports, Published January 09 2012

Moorhead man sentenced in Fargo robberies

FARGO – The last of four men to be sentenced for three armed robberies at Fargo stores earlier this year was ordered today to spend 2½ years in prison.

Raheem Kemokai, 19, of Moorhead, received credit for roughly nine months he had spent in the Cass County Jail since his arrest in March.

Kemokai pleaded guilty in August to two counts of conspiring to commit robbery and one count of robbery, all Class B felonies punishable by up to 10 years in prison.

The conspiracy charges stemmed from armed holdups of Stop-N-Go stories at 1462 Broadway on Feb. 15 and 2701 S. University Drive on March 12. The robbery count was for a March 11 armed stickup at the African Market at 1230 23rd St. S.

Kemokai used an unloaded BB gun in the African Market robbery “because I wasn’t planning on hurting anyone,” he said in Cass County District Court this morning. He apologized to the community, business owners and store clerks, saying he can’t imagine how scared they must have been.

Judge Steven McCullough sentenced Kemokai to three 30-month prison terms, to run concurrently. Kemokai also must serve two years of supervised probation, pay $922 in restitution and undergo a chemical dependency evaluation.

Prosecutors had taken a four-year mandatory minimum sentence off the table because Kemokai offered police information about a fifth suspect, a 16-year-old boy, in the Feb. 15 robbery.

Isaac Nyemah, Manlear Peter and Thomas Paye, all of Fargo, were sentenced last summer after pleading guilty to charges in the same three robberies. Nyemah received 40 months in prison, while Peter and Paye each got an additional eight months in jail, Forum archives show.