News and Press Releases


October 19, 2011

Wifredo A. Ferrer, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, John V. Gillies, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Miami Field Office, and Delsa Bush, Chief, West Palm Beach Police Department; announced that Willie Gus Hampton, 47, of West Palm Beach, was sentenced yesterday to 96 months in prison following his guilty plea to one count of bank robbery, in violation of Title 18, U. S. C. § 2113(a).

Hampton was indicted on bank robbery charges regarding the April 28, 2011 attempted robbery of Wachovia Bank in West Palm Beach and the robbery of SunTrust Bank in West Palm Beach later that same day.

According to court filings, on April 28, 2011, at approximately 3:18 PM, a man later identified as Willie Gus Hampton entered the SunTrust Bank, located on Belvedere Road, in West Palm Beach, approached the teller counter and presented a note stating “I got a gun give me $100 and $50 dollar bills and hurry it up!!” The teller provided Hampton with U. S. currency, after which Hampton fled the bank. He was arrested a short time later in an adjacent parking lot by police officers from the West Palm Beach Police Department.

Less than 30 minutes before the SunTrust robbery occurred, Hampton had entered the Wachovia Bank on Southern Boulevard in West Palm Beach, demanding money in a note that stated “I got a gun give me $100 and $50 bills.” The teller did not respond to his demands immediately, and Hampton left Wachovia bank and traveled to SunTrust, where he then committed that bank robbery.

At the sentencing hearing, Judge Middlebrooks imposed a term of 96 months as to Count 2, to be followed by a term of 3 years supervised release. Judge Middlebrooks noted the defendant’s significant number of prior felony convictions and stated the 96-month sentence was necessary for “the protection of the public.” The judge then dismissed Count 1 pursuant to a motion by the government.

Mr. Ferrer commended the investigative efforts of the FBI and the West Palm Beach Police Department. This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Lauren Jorgensen.

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A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney's Office for the Southern District of Florida at Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Southern District of Florida at or on

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