Source: Lake Geneva Regional News

Man sentenced for armed robberies

by Rob Ireland

July 04, 2013

The gunman in an armed robbery spree will be incarcerated until at least 2023 after Judge John Race sent him to prison for another four years.

Terrance Cortez Walker Jr., 26, of Elgin, Ill., was connected to a robbery group that was responsible for between 20 and 30 armed robberies in Lake and McHenry County in Illinois and Walworth and Kenosha County.

“I would like to apologize to all the people I psychologically and emotionally damaged,” Walker said. “I hope that someday they can potentially forgive me.”

Walker was arrested in 2009 and was responsible for armed robberies at the Comfort Suites, Lake Geneva; Domino’s Pizza, Delavan; Citgo gas station, Williams Bay; Mobile gas station, Elkhorn and the Lyons Shell Station. He pleaded guilty to three armed robbery charges and two other counts were dismissed but read into the record.

In Illinois, Walker was given a 10 year prison sentence, and is eligible for parole next year. In Kenosha County, Walker was sentenced to five years of initial incarceration and eight years of extended supervision.

Judge John Race sentenced Walker to four years in prison and to six years of extended supervision.

The armed robbery spree lasted for about three months, and prior to that Walker had no criminal record, was a high school graduate and was taking classes at a technical school for culinary arts.

How does a man with no previous criminal record go from classes at a technical college to being the gunman in armed robberies?

“That is because of the influence and impact of Michael Boyle,” Walker’s attorney David Berman said.

Walker and others in the group have pointed to Michael R. Boyle, 46, of Twin Lakes, as the ringleader for the group. Boyle is currently in custody awaiting trial in Illinois, and he also faces felony armed robbery charges in Kenosha and Walworth County.

“All the co-defendants have said Michael Boyle was the leader to this, we all followed Mike Boyle,” Berman said.

Berman said Boyle acted like a father-figure to Walker and others in the group. Boyle said the young men in the group, one who was only 15, grew up without fathers.

Sentence recommendations

Assistant District Attorney Zeke Wiedenfeld asked Race to send Walker to prison for seven years and have him on extended supervision for another seven years.

Wiedenfeld said typically he would have recommended a much longer sentence, but Walker has already received lengthy sentences in both Kenosha County and Illinois.

“These crimes have a long-lasting effect on victims,” Wiedenfeld said. “These are crimes where when the victim goes to sleep at night, they see a man wearing a mask pointing a gun at them.”

Berman said Walker was facing a unique situation because his crimes were committed in four different jurisdictions, in two different states. As a result, he has faced four judges and four prosecutors.

Berman asked Race to sentence Walker to five years in prison and five years of extended supervision. However, he asked that the sentence run concurrent with the Kenosha County sentence. This would allow Walker to be released from prison in 2019.

Other defendants

On June 25, 2009, Boyle was interviewed by the Lake Villa, Ill., Police Department. During that interview, Boyle said he was involved in robberies with Walker. Boyle told police he drove Walker to the Comfort Suites, and said that Walker went into the hotel and robbed it.

On June 30, 2009, a Kenosha police detective interviewed Andrew Ballenger, of Twin Lakes, who admitted to his involvement in the Domino’s robbery.

Ballenger said Boyle planned the robberies, picked the locations and drove to them. Ballenger told police that Boyle would take part in the robberies or send people to the locations.

After being found guilty at jury trial of armed robbery, Ballenger was sentenced on Oct. 19, 2011, to four years in a state prison followed by six years of extended supervision. Ballenger is appealing that conviction.

Ballenger also has convictions for armed robbery in Kenosha County.

According to the state Department of Corrections website, Ballenger is scheduled to be released June 19, 2018.

On June 25, 2009, police interviewed Tyler J. Trnovec, of Silver Lake, about the robbery at the Elkhorn Mobil. Trnovec told police he entered the gas station with Walker and they both pointed pellet guns at the clerk.

As Trnovec left he yelled “GD Love.” Walker told police that Boyle told them to yell this in an effort to throw police off and make them think gang members carried out the robberies.

Trnovec was 15 at the time of the robbery but has been waived into adult court. Trnovec pleaded guilty to a felony charge of armed robbery and was sentenced to eight years of probation.