Defendant in Longmont armed robberies sentenced to 16 years in prison

May 26—One of the defendants who took a plea deal in connection with a string of armed robberies in Longmont was sentenced Friday to 16 years in prison.

Kenny Espinoza, 23, pleaded guilty in April to aggravated robbery and felony menacing, with attorneys agreeing Espinoza would serve 10 to 22 years in the Colorado Department of Corrections.

On Friday, Boulder District Judge Patrick Butler sentenced Espinoza to 16 years in prison.

Espinoza's co-defendant in the case, Nija Droessler, 22, already pleaded guilty to a felony count of aggravated robbery and was sentenced to three years of probation with 90 days of day reporting and 40 hours of community service.

According to police, Espinoza and Droessler committed a string of robberies at Longmont motels, with Espinoza armed with a BB rifle designed to look like a real gun.

Employees of one of the motels reviewed the security footage and were able to identify one of the suspects as Espinoza, who had been an employee there.

Police went to Espinoza's address and placed him into custody, along with Droessler.

Droessler confessed to helping Espinoza with the robberies, and told police what they were wearing at the time.

A search of the apartment also turned up wigs and caps that matched those seen in the surveillance footage. A BB gun matching the weapon used in the robberies was also found on scene.