An Idaho Falls man who committed a string of robberies and shot a deputy last year was sentenced to 20 years in prison Wednesday.
Juan Santos-Quintero, 24, was charged with multiple felonies last year after an 12-day robbery spree ended with him shooting and injuring a Bingham County Sheriff’s Office deputy.
Santos-Quintero and his then-girlfriend Denise Williams committed four robberies in 2018 between Sept. 10 and Sept. 21 involving six victims.
Santos-Quintero pleaded guilty to three of the robberies and a burglary charge in exchange for the other robbery charges, another burglary charge and an aggravated battery charge being dismissed.
District Judge Bruce Pickett sentenced Santos-Quintero to a 20-year fixed term in prison with no indeterminate period for each robbery. He also was sentenced to five years fixed and five indeterminate for the burglary. The sentences will be served concurrently with his sentence in Bingham County.
In June, Santos-Quintero was sentenced by District Judge Darren Simpson in Bingham County to a minimum of 20 years in prison with the potential of a life sentence for shooting Sgt. Todd Howell. He was also ordered to serve a consecutive sentence with a seven-year minimum for shooting at another deputy.
Bonneville County Assistant Chief Deputy Prosecutor Tanner Crowther told the court the victims had asked that their names not be used in court out of fear Santos-Quintero, who was involved in gang activity in Idaho Falls, would retaliate against them.
Police reports from his crimes state witnesses did not want to speak to police out of fear their names would appear in court records. During Santos-Quintero’s bench trial in April, Williams refused to testify even when told she would be held in contempt. At her own sentencing, she said she was afraid of what he would do if she testified against him.
“I didn’t testify, I want to say, because I was scared. Juan’s a scary person,” Williams said during her sentencing in June.
The robberies involved Santos-Quintero and Williams threatening victims with a gun.
On Sept. 10, 2018, Santos-Quintero entered a man’s home with another man, stealing multiple items. During the robbery, he fired a bullet above one of the men’s heads.
On Sept. 15 Santos-Quintero and Williams robbed two juveniles outside the Panda Express in Ammon, stealing cash and their bag. Santos-Quintero pistol-whipped one of the victims.
On Sept. 16 the couple robbed two adults outside of Hope Lutheran Church. A fight ensued, and Santos-Quintero fired at one of the victims as he fled.
The final robbery happened on Sept. 21 when Santos-Quintero entered the Common Cents store on West Broadway Street and robbed the cash register at gunpoint.
Later that day, law enforcement caught up with Santos-Quintero and Williams in Bingham County. He shot Howell during a standoff before surrendering.