Man sentenced to 13 years in prison for robbery, cocaine possession

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. – A Virginia Beach man was sentenced Tuesday to 13 years in prison for robbery and cocaine possession.

Thomas James Schooley

47-year-old Thomas James Schooley pleaded guilty to the Possession of Schedule I/II Drug charge on June 5, 2017. The next day, he was convicted by a jury on the charge of Robbery. The jury recommended that Schooley serve five years and six month for Robbery; the judge also imposed an additional sentence of seven years and six months for the Possession of Schedule I/II Drug.

Evidence proved that on November 6, 2016, Schooley approached a man who was waiting for a bus on 18th Street in Virginia Beach. After a brief conversation, Schooley punched the man, causing the man to fall to the ground. Schooley picked up the victim’s wallet after it fell out of the victim’s pocket, jumped on the victim’s bike and rode away.

The victim chased after Schooley but could not keep up. The victim found his wallet lying on the ground a short distance from the scene of the attack. The victim immediately informed the police of the incident and provided a detailed description of the suspect.

About 40 minutes later, police found Schooley with the victim’s bike a few blocks away from the scene of the robbery. The victim was able to identify Schooley as the man who robbed and attacked him. Schooley had a pipe containing cocaine residue in his pocket when he was arrested.

It was revealed that Schooley has an extensive criminal record dating back to 1987. His prior convictions include:

  • three counts of Robbery, five counts of Public Intoxication
  • two counts of Trespassing
  • one count of Shoplifting
  • one count of Disorderly Conduct
  • one count of DUI, one count of Grand Larceny
  • three counts of Receiving Stolen Goods
  • one count of Possession of Drug Paraphernalia
  • one count of Delivery of Drugs to a Prisoner
  • two counts of Possession of Schedule I/II Drugs
  • one count of Petit Larceny
  • one count of Possession of Marijuana
  • one count of Obstruction of Justice
  • one count of DUI Maiming
  • one count of DUI 2nd Offense within 5 years and
  • various traffic infractions and probation violations