Man Accused of Robberies Near UC Riverside Enters Plea

RIVERSIDE – One of three men accused of targeting UC Riverside students in a string of robberies bordering the campus pleaded not guilty today to multiple felony charges.

Markeith Dwayne Shavers, 19, of Moreno Valley was arrested Saturday in connection with a half-dozen holdups that occurred on Jan. 16 and 17.

The convicted felon was the third alleged perpetrator identified in the robbery series. Doneal Lewis Cephus, 18, and Xavier Frances Vining, 20 — both of Moreno Valley — were arrested two days before Shavers.

Each defendant is charged with nine counts of armed robbery and sentence- enhancing allegations of using a firearm in the commission of a felony.

Shavers appeared before Riverside County Superior Court Judge Helios Hernandez, who appointed him a public defender and set a felony conference in the case for Feb. 1.

Vining pleaded not guilty at his Tuesday arraignment. Cephus is jailed in San Bernardino County for an unrelated incident and is expected to be turned over to Riverside County authorities in the coming week.

Both Shavers and Vining are being held in lieu of $495,000 bail at the Smith Correctional Facility in Banning.

According to Riverside police, five robberies occurred on Jan. 16, beginning around 8 p.m. in the area of Linden and Rustin streets. The victims told investigators that they were confronted by one of three black men in a silver or gray four-door Honda. The suspect demanded the victims’ personal belongings at gunpoint, then fled the scene, police said.

The same scenario played out four more times over a one-hour span at various locations around the UCR campus, including a remote parking lot at Canyon Crest and Martin Luther King boulevards, close to an onramp to Interstate 215, authorities said.

On the night of Jan. 17, another robbery occurred, again involving three suspects, at Fair Isle and Lochmoor drives, near a freeway entrance, according to police.

The suspect vehicle was located a short time later with Vining at the wheel on Box Springs Canyon Road, and he was arrested without incident, said Sgt. Dan Russell, adding that the ensuing investigation led to the identification of Cephus and Shavers.

According to court records, Shavers was convicted in August of burglary and several counts of possessing illegal drugs. He was sentenced to 200 days in jail and 36 months probation.


Man accused of robbing students near UC Riverside to be arraigned

RIVERSIDE – One of three men accused of targeting UC Riverside students in a string of robberies bordering the campus is slated to be arraigned today.

Markeith Dwayne Shavers, 19, of Moreno Valley was arrested Saturday in connection with a half-dozen holdups that occurred on Jan. 16 and 17.

He was the third alleged perpetrator identified in the robbery series. Doneal Lewis Cephus, 18, and Xavier Frances Vining, 20 — both of Moreno Valley — were arrested two days before Shavers.

Each defendant is charged with nine counts of armed robbery and sentence- enhancing allegations of using a firearm in the commission of a felony.

Vining pleaded not guilty during an arraignment Tuesday. Cephus is jailed in San Bernardino County for an unrelated incident and is expected to be turned over to Riverside County authorities in the coming week.

Both Shavers and Vining are being held in lieu of $495,000 bail at the Smith Correctional Facility in Banning.

According to Riverside police, five robberies occurred on Jan. 16, beginning around 8 p.m. in the area of Linden and Rustin streets. The victims told investigators that they were confronted by one of three black men in a silver or gray four-door Honda. The suspect demanded the victims’ personal belongings at gunpoint, then fled the scene, police said.

The same scenario played out four more times over a one-hour span at various locations around the UCR campus, including a remote parking lot at Canyon Crest and Martin Luther King boulevards, close to an onramp to Interstate 215, authorities said.

On the night of Jan. 17, another robbery occurred, again involving three suspects, at Fair Isle and Lochmoor drives, near a freeway entrance, according to police.

The suspect vehicle was located a short time later with Vining at the wheel on Box Springs Canyon Road, and he was arrested without incident, said Sgt. Dan Russell, adding that the ensuing investigation led to the identification of Cephus and Shavers.

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