Man receives 25 years for trying to kill armed robbery victim

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By Andrew Michalscheck By Andrew Michalscheck

PHOENIX -- A Valley man will be spending the next several years behind bars for committing armed robbery and then attempting to kill his victim.

Shaun Tonge, 26, was sentenced to 25 years in prison Tuesday for one count of attempted murder and one count of armed robbery.

Tonge received 12.5 years for each count, with the judge ordering that they be served consecutively.

In May 2010, an unidentified robber stole a personal vehicle and a handgun from an off-duty Phoenix Police officer.

Three days later, Tonge broke into a Phoenix home while armed with the stolen handgun.

A female resident returned home while Tonge was robbing the house, and was hit in the head multiple times with the gun. She was able to escape, however, and called 9-1-1.

Tonge’s accomplice in the robbery, Shanna Lee Parent, was waiting nearby in a car, but fled the scene when she saw Tonge confront the female resident.

Tonge ran from the home and hid in a nearby trash can, where he was eventually located and arrested.

At the time of his arrest, Tonge was wearing a wedding ring that belonged to the police officer who had been robbed three days prior.

While he was behind bars awaiting trial on charges of armed robbery and aggravated assault, Tonge conspired with Parent and another man to murder the woman he had robbed and attacked.

The Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office learned of Tonge’s plans and introduced an undercover officer as a hitman for hire.

Tonge proceeded to call the undercover officer and offered him $1,000 to kill the woman.

Parent then drove the officer past the victim’s house, and introduced him to two other men who sold him weapons that had been stolen from Yavapai County.

Parent also offered to give the officer a $500 down payment and provide him with a gun to commit the murder.

Parent, 34, was arrested in October 2010. She entered a guilty plea to one count of attempted first-degree premeditated murder and was sentenced to eight years in prison.

Tonge was also charged with attempted first-degree premeditated murder.

Prior to opening statements in his trial, Tonge decided to plead guilty to the attempted murder charge and one count of armed robbery.