Long prison sentence for Shannon M. Soroka
The robber who held a gun to the head of poker pro Darren Elias’ babysitter during a home invasion has been sentenced to 13 years in state prison.
Shannon M. Soroka, of Philadelphia, was sentenced to 13 years in state prison for an armed invasion that occurred in March. https://t.co/lblILDbRob
— The Medford Sun (@MedfordSun) December 19, 2019
25-year old Philadelphian Shannon M. Soroka – himself a poker player – pleaded guilty this July to charges of robbery, burglary, and possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose.
As we reported back in March, the robber was arrested the day after forcing his way into the Elias family home in Medford, South Jersey. He held the family’s babysitter hostage and demanded to know where the Elias’ kept their money.
The babysitter was in the kitchen with the Elias’ 2-year old daughter at the time of the incident. The robber pointed the gun at the 19-year old’s head, then at her back forcing her through the house.
A heroic act by the babysitter
After she managed to get the child safely into a bedroom, the babysitter was locked in a basement bathroom. Later she managed to escape through a window to raise the alarm. Both the babysitter and the child were unharmed.
Burlington County Prosecutor Scott Coffinasaid of her actions: “We admire the courage displayed by the victim and her determination to protect the child under her care.
He added: “This is one of the most frightening situations anyone could encounter, and I commend the investigators who identified and quickly apprehended this dangerous defendant.”
The police arrested the robber the following day. His escape from the Elias home caught on CCTV. Prosecutors later revealed he was in “tens of thousands” of dollars of gambling and drug debt.
Darren Elias, a pro with almost $7.4million in career tournament earnings, told NBC10 news at the time of the incident: “It’s incredibly scary for me and my family. It was an awful feeling.
He added:“I would say he was familiar with what I do for a living and thought that I might have things of value in the house.”
Soroka has $37,745 in tournament earnings according to the Hendon Mob database. That’s certainly a figure that won’t be increasing any time soon following the 13-year prison term handed down this week.
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