Getaway Driver in Armed Bank Robbery Sentenced To over 12 Years in Prison

April 13, 2011

Greenbelt, Maryland - U.S. District Judge Alexander Williams sentenced Tyrone Lockhart, age 30, formerly of Washington, D.C., today to 148 months in prison followed by five years of supervised release for armed bank robbery and aiding the use of a firearm during a crime of violence. Judge Williams also entered an order to pay restitution of $98,271.

The sentence was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein; Special Agent in Charge Richard A. McFeely of the Federal Bureau of Investigation; Interim Chief Mark Magaw of the Prince George’s County Police Department; Chief James Craze of the Greenbelt Police Department and Prince George’s County State’s Attorney Angela D. Alsobrooks.

According to Lockhart’s guilty plea, Lockhart and Anthony Nelson conspired to rob the Bank of America branch in the 5800 block of Silver Hill Road in Forestville, Maryland where Nelson’s girlfriend worked as a teller. On the morning of February 11, 2005, after Nelson’s girlfriend went to work at the bank, Lockhart bought marijuana from his cousin and his cousin’s friend, Richard Botchway. Thereafter, Lockhart and Nelson drove together to the bank. Nelson was armed with a gun. As they had planned, Nelson accosted his girlfriend as she returned to the bank from her lunch break and pretended to force her into the bank while Lockhart acted as getaway driver and lookout. Inside the bank, Nelson brandished a gun and robbed his girlfriend and the other teller of approximately $98,271 in cash, then locked the two tellers in the bank vault. Nelson and Lockhart drove away.

Nelson and Lockhart met the cousin and Botchway and got into Botchway’s car. Botchway was driving and Nelson was in a rear seat. For several hours, the four men drove around the Maryland and D.C. area, as Nelson and Lockhart were looking for a hotel and some girls in order to have a party using the cash stolen from the bank.

Around 3:15 p.m., Botchway drove onto Golden Triangle Drive in Greenbelt, which led to a hotel. Botchway wanted Nelson and Lockhart to get out of the car so that Botchway could pick up his girlfriend. As they pulled onto Golden Triangle Drive, Nelson pulled out a handgun and fired it once into the back of Botchway’s head, killing him instantly. With the car still running, the cousin and Lockhart got out and ran away. As Nelson attempted to gather clothing and other evidence from the bank robbery from the back seat of the car, a hotel employee questioned him about the car blocking the hotel driveway, and Nelson ran away in a different direction. The hotel employee discovered Botchway’s body in the car.

Anthony D. Nelson, age 27, of Washington, D.C. and Suitland, Maryland, pleaded guilty to armed bank robbery, using a firearm during a crime of violence, and admitted shooting and killing Richard Botchway, of Riverdale, Maryland. Nelson faces a maximum sentence of life in prison at his sentencing on April 18, 2011 at 9:30 a.m.

United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein commended the FBI, Prince George’s County Police Department, the Greenbelt Police Department and the Prince George’s County State’s Attorney’s Office for their work in the investigation and prosecution. Mr. Rosenstein thanked Assistant United States Attorneys Sandra Wilkinson and Robert K. Hur, who prosecuted the case.

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