from the Superior Court in Maricopa County No.
CR2016-117755-001 The Honorable Lauren R. Guyton, Judge Pro
Arizona Attorney General's Office, Phoenix By Eliza C.
Ybarra Counsel for Appellee
Maricopa County Public Defender's Office, Phoenix By Mark
E. Dwyer Counsel for Appellant
Presiding Judge Diane M. Johnsen delivered the opinion of the
Court, in which Judge Paul J. McMurdie and Judge David D.
Oscar Manuel Montes Flores told the employee behind the
counter of a convenience store that he had a gun and moved
his hand beneath his shirt and waistband as if he was holding
a weapon. He demanded money, and the employee gave him what
there was in the cash register. A jury convicted Montes
Flores of armed robbery and other charges. We affirm, holding
that it did not matter that the victim of the robbery did not
see him use his hand to simulate a weapon.
AND PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND
Montes Flores entered a convenience store before dawn one
morning, selected some sunflower seeds and a bottle of water
and paid for them at the front counter. His transaction
complete, Montes Flores looked toward the front door, then
turned again in the direction of the assistant manager behind
the counter. Sliding his hand beneath his shirt and under the
waistband of his pants, Montes Flores leaned forward and
demanded, "Give me all your money, I have a gun."
Not immediately understanding, the victim responded,
"Excuse me?" After Montes Flores repeated his
statement, the victim quickly opened the register and began
to pull money from the drawer. Montes Flores told him to put
the money in a bag. As soon as the victim handed him the bag,
Montes Flores walked out of the store and drove off in a
stolen SUV. Surveillance cameras captured the robbery in its
Police arrested Montes Flores after he crashed the SUV not
far away. The State charged him with armed robbery, theft of
a means of transportation and criminal damage caused in
connection with the theft of the SUV. The State also alleged
aggravating circumstances and that Montes Flores had
historical prior felony convictions.
The jury found Montes Flores guilty as charged. At
sentencing, he admitted two historical prior felony
convictions. The superior court sentenced him to concurrent
terms of incarceration, the longest of which was 14 years.
Montes Flores timely appealed, and we have jurisdiction
pursuant to Article 6, Section 9, of the Arizona
Constitution, and Arizona Revised Statutes
("A.R.S.") sections 12-120.21(A)(1) (2018), 13-4031
(2018), and -4033(A)(1) (2018).
Constitutional Validity of A.R.S. § 13-1904.
Montes Flores was convicted under A.R.S. § 13-1904(A)
(2018), which provides that an armed robbery ...