LOS ANGELES – A Compton man was sentenced Monday to more than nine years in federal prison for targeting and robbing men he met on the Grindr dating app.
Derrick Patterson was sentenced to 111 months behind bars by U.S. District Judge John F. Walter, who also ordered him to pay $84,195 in restitution. At the hearing, Walter applied a hate-crime enhancement to Patterson’s sentence, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
Patterson, 23, pleaded guilty in July in downtown Los Angeles to federal robbery and aggravated identity theft charges.
Patterson targeted his victims by using Grindr. Prosecutors say he met his victims at their homes or in hotel rooms, purportedly for sexual encounters, then robbed them. During the robberies, Patterson pulled weapons — knives or a Taser gun — on his victims, then demanded money and their cell phones, before leaving the scene with the victims’ wallets.
On other occasions, Patterson physically assaulted his victims. He then later withdrew money from victims’ bank accounts or used their credit cards for his own personal expenses, according to the criminal complaint filed in Los Angeles federal court.
During a robbery in October 2020, Patterson stabbed a victim in the chest. The victim survived and later positively identified Patterson during a photographic lineup as his attacker, federal prosecutors said.
A final robbery occurred on March 26 of this year at a hotel in Beverly Hills, according to court papers.