Phoenix, Arizona - Monday, Ryan Pearson, 32, of Payson, Arizona, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Susan M. Brnovich to five years in prison followed by three years of supervised release.  Pearson had previously pleaded guilty to possession of a firearm during and in relation to a crime of violence.

Pearson admitted to using a firearm, along with co-defendant Armando Pablo Ochoa, to rob the Mazatal Casino, in Payson, Arizona, on the Tonto Apache Indian Reservation.  Ochoa and Pearson entered the casino armed with handguns and demanded employees open a vault.  When they did not receive immediate compliance, Ochoa and Pearson each fired a round from their weapons.  Both Ochoa and Pearson were employees of the casino at the time. 

The investigation in this case was conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.  The prosecution was handled by Anthony W. Church, Assistant U.S. Attorney, District of Arizona, Phoenix.