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Port Arthur man sentenced to 80 years in federal prison for conspiracy

Allison Neil Clark was killed May 14, 2010 after a group went on a crime spree in east Texas.

A 35-year-old Port Arthur man has been sentenced to 80 years in federal prison for violations related to the killing of a Port Acres woman in the Eastern District of Texas, U.S. Attorney Alan R. Jackson announced Wednesday.

Sabino Orlando Martinez was found guilty by a jury on Apr. 27, 2017 of conspiracy to interfere with interstate commerce by robbery, conspiracy to use and carry firearms during a crime of violence, and conspiracy to possess firearms during a drug trafficking crime. Martinez was sentenced to 960 months in federal prison today by U.S. District Judge Marcia A. Crone.

According to information presented in court, beginning in 2001, Martinez and others started robbing women in the parking lots of stores and businesses in Port Arthur. Evidence showed the defendants committed the robberies for the purpose of supporting their crack cocaine habits.

The robberies increased to almost daily between 2009 and 2011. During the investigation of these crimes, it was discovered that Martinez and his co-defendants were responsible for the May 14, 2010 death of Allison Neil Clark, of Port Acres. Clark was shot while driving on West Port Arthur Road. Once law enforcement officers became aware of Martinez’s co-defendant’s vehicle in the area, they were quickly able to focus on Martinez’s involvement.

Video surveillance from area businesses verified the vehicle’s presence in the area at the time of the shooting. Testimony at trial revealed that Martinez fired the shot that killed Clark. Martinez was indicted by a federal grand jury on May 4, 2016.

“Allison Neil Clark did not deserve to be executed in front of her child,” Jackson said in a news release. “But because a group of dedicated investigators refused to give up on this case, Sabino Martinez will spend the rest of his life in a federal prison. We hope this sentencing will bring some sense of closure to this family, and remind our communities that we need to stand together against those who would desecrate them with drugs and the violence it encourages.”

This case was brought as part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program that has been historically successful in bringing together all levels of law enforcement to reduce violent crime and make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. Attorney General Jeff Sessions has made turning the tide of rising violent crime in America a top priority. In October 2017, as part of a series of actions to address this crime trend, Attorney General Sessions announced the reinvigoration of PSN and directed all U.S. Attorney’s Offices to develop a district crime reduction strategy that incorporates the lessons learned since PSN launched in 2001.

This case was investigated by the Port Arthur Police Department, Drug Enforcement Administration and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Lesley Woods and Joseph R. Batte

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