GATESVILLE — A Killeen man pleaded guilty this week to robbing a Copperas Cove convenience store with a screwdriver.

Judge Trent Farrell of the 52nd District Court sentenced Mercel D’Shawn Ervin, 27, to 15 years in prison. The hearing took place Tuesday after Ervin pleaded guilty to an aggravated robbery charge for a December incident. He will be required to serve at least half of the sentence before applying for parole.

According to the arrest affidavit, Ervin entered the store brandishing a screwdriver before jumping over the counter and demanding money.

The victim gave him $27 from the cash register before Ervin allegedly took the victim to a back room of the business and demanded the video surveillance tape, according to court records. The victim said there was no tape but everything was recorded by the computer. Ervin then began to kiss and lick the victim’s neck before allegedly demanding she take off her clothes. Refusing, the victim fended off Ervin, causing him to flee the scene.

Copperas Cove obtained DNA evidence by taking Ervin’s saliva from the victim’s neck.

In unrelated cases this week, Farrell sentenced:

  • Tina Montes, 41, of Gatesville, to 10 years. Montes pleaded guilty to possession of a controlled substance with intent to deliver in a drug-free zone.
  • Roy Don Freeman, 54, of Gatesville, to eight years. Freeman pleaded guilty to driving while intoxicated, third or more offense.

Contact Mason W. Canales at ​ or (254) 501-7474

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