FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, February 22, 2013
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District Man Sentenced to Five-Year Prison Term
For Two Bank Robberies in 2008
-Crimes Committed Within One Week-
WASHINGTON – Tony Wilkerson, 41, of Washington, D.C., was sentenced today to a five-year prison term for carrying out two bank robberies within one week, announced U.S. Attorney Ronald C. Machen Jr., Valerie Parlave, Assistant Director in Charge of the FBI’s Washington Field Office, and Cathy L. Lanier, Chief of the Metropolitan Police Department (MPD)
Wilkerson earlier pled guilty to two counts of bank robbery. He was sentenced by the Honorable Ellen S. Huvelle in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. Upon completion of his prison term, Wilkerson will be placed on three years of supervised release. He also will be required to pay a total of $10,380 in restitution.
According to the government’s evidence, on Nov. 17, 2008, at approximately 10:40 a.m., Wilkerson entered an M&T Bank in the 6400 block of Georgia Avenue NW. Wilkerson was wearing a grey sweatshirt with stripes, and a blue baseball cap. While inside the bank, he walked to the teller's counter and presented a note demanding money.
The teller complied and provided him with $5,000. Wilkerson took the cash and fled the bank, but he left the demand note behind. The bank's security guard, who had been patrolling the area around the bank at the time of the robbery, soon learned what had happened and began following Wilkerson. The guard lost sight of Wilkerson but found in a nearby yard a grey sweatshirt with stripes and a blue baseball hat consistent with the clothing that the robber wore.
These items were collected by law enforcement and sent to the FBI for analysis. Tests identified DNA found on the clothing as belonging to Wilkerson. His DNA was in the criminal justice system because of a prior conviction. The FBI also matched Wilkerson’s fingerprints to the demand note and a toy recovered with the robbery clothing.
The government’s evidence also showed that, on Nov. 24, 2008, Wilkerson robbed a SunTrust branch in the 6400 block of Georgia Avenue NW. Shortly after 10 a.m. that day, he passed a demand note to the teller that stated, “this is a robbery give me $8,000.” Wilkerson leaned forward, placing his palm on the counter of the teller station. The teller opened her drawer and gave Wilkerson bills totaling $5,380.
Wilkerson took the money and began to leave. However, he realized he had forgotten his demand note, and so he returned to the window, grabbed the note, and fled. Law enforcement recovered a palm print from the counter that Wilkerson touched and later submitted it to the FBI for analysis. The FBI Laboratory was tasked with comparing Tony Wilkerson's fingerprints, on file with the Integrated Automated Fingerprint Identifications System (IAFIS), with the latent palm print obtained from the bank counter. Upon completion of the comparison, the FBI Laboratory advised that Tony Wilkerson’s palm print was a match.
The investigation showed that the two bank robberies were carried out in a similar manner. The witnesses at the M&T Bank were shown a surveillance photograph of the person who robbed the SunTrust Bank, and they identified him as the robber as well.
Wilkerson was arrested in North Carolina in May 2012.
In announcing the sentence, U.S. Attorney Machen, Assistant Director in Charge Parlave, and Chief Lanier commended the exceptional investigative work of the FBI/MPD Violent Crimes Task Force. They also commended the work of former Assistant U.S. Attorney Sean Lewis and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Brittan Heller, who prosecuted the matter.13-068