The criminal charge of bank robbery carries a federal status, and the penalties for a conviction are very serious. In many cases involving allegations of bank robbery, there are additional charges related to weapons. Prosecutors may file weapons charges even if no weapons were seen or discharged during the alleged robbery. A threat of using a weapon could lead to a gun-related charge.
Still, there may be defense strategies for protecting against robbery allegations, and a young man from South Park, Pennsylvania, will need such a defense.
The 25-year-old was recently arrested and charged with robbing a bank in Bethel Park. Police took him into custody two days after the alleged incident at Northwest Savings Bank. People who viewed surveillance video from the bank claimed to recognize the man, though the suspect's face was concealed in the video.
The amount of money taken from the bank was not disclosed, and there was no word as to whether any weapons charges would accompany the bank robbery charge. Police did say that the person who robbed the bank demanded money, took some and ran away.
In cases involving bank robbery charges, it is important not to let the prosecution's side of the story be the only side told to the court. There may be issues such as mental health or drug or alcohol use that factor into the case.
Depending on the available facts, it may also be possible to show a disconnection between the defendant and the alleged crime.
In short, it is important not to simply let the prosecution pursue the harshest possible penalties. Everyone accused of a crime has the right to a legal defense.
Source: Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, "Bethel Park police nab suspected bank robber," Mary Niederberger, Oct. 20, 2013