Steven Dee Norred Pleads Guilty in U.S. Federal Cour
The United States Attorney's Office announced that during a federal court session in Missoula, on March 21, 2012, before U.S. Magistrate Judge Jeremiah C. Lynch, STEVEN DEE NORRED, a 56-year-old resident of Bigfork, pled guilty to (5) counts of bank robbery and possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime of violence. Sentencing has been set for June 28, 2012. He is currently detained.
In an Offer of Proof filed by Assistant U.S. Attorney Timothy J. Racicot, the government stated it would have proved at trial the following:
On September 24, 2010, NORRED robbed the First Interstate Bank in Bigfork. He entered the bank and threw a camouflage backpack at the teller. He told the teller to fill the backpack with money, which turned out to be approximately $6,553. NORRED was wearing a black motorcycle helmet, a black jacket, goggles or glasses, and a dark-colored bandana around his neck. One witness described the robber as being between 5'5" and 5'7" tall and having a medium build. NORRED is approximately 5'4" or 5'5" tall.
On November 10, 2010, NORRED robbed Glacier Bank's Lakeside branch. He entered the bank wearing gray sweat pants, a black coat, and an orange motorcycle helmet. He approached the counter and ordered the teller to place money into a camouflage backpack. After he received the money - approximately $46,000 - he left the bank. One of the witnesses described the robber as being about 5'4" tall.
On April 5, 2011, NORRED robbed First Valley Bank's Seeley Lake branch. He entered the bank wearing a black or green face mask, a black hat, black sunglasses, a black jacket and black pants. He demanded that the bank employees place money on the counter and put approximately $7,687 into a black and blue backpack. He left the bank riding a blue Polaris ATV and heading north on Highway 83. The sunglasses that NORRED was believed to be wearing during the robbery were recovered by law enforcement near the spot where the ATV had been parked. The witnesses told law enforcement that the robber was between 5'3" and 5'7" tall.
On May 31, 2011, NORRED robbed Bitterroot Valley Bank's St. Regis branch. He entered the bank wearing jeans and a black motorcycle helmet with a white head covering under the helmet. The employees at the bank - who thought the robber was between 5'3" and 5'6" tall - complied with his commands and placed approximately $13,592 on the counter, which NORRED placed into a camouflage backpack. NORRED left the bank riding a small motorcycle.
On September 28, 2011, NORRED robbed Glacier Bank's Lakeside branch for a second time. He entered the bank in the afternoon, lifted his shirt to reveal a firearm in a holster, and ordered one teller to put her cash drawer on the counter. He then requested that the window drawer and a second teller's cash drawer be placed on the counter. As he removed the money from the second teller's drawer, he asked a bank customer if the customer wanted some money. He placed the money - approximately $14,180 - into a camouflage backpack and departed the bank, but was followed by the customer. NORRED was wearing black sweat pants over jeans, a black helmet with a clear visor, and a white head covering under the helmet.
The bank customer who witnessed the robbery followed NORRED's motorcycle for a distance, but eventually lost sight of him. Shortly thereafter, the customer observed a truck appear from the nearby woods and proceed north on Highway 93. The customer followed the truck and reported the license plate number. Law enforcement eventually pulled over the truck, which NORRED was driving, and seized bait bills from the robbery and a firearm in a holster, specifically a Sig Saur, SigPro SP2340, .40 caliber handgun. Glacier Bank and the other banks referenced above were all FDIC insured at the times of the robberies.
NORRED faces possible penalties of 25 years in prison, a $250,000 fine and 5 years supervised release on each count of robbery. In addition, NORRED faces the possibility of an additional mandatory minimum 7 years in prison and could be sentenced to life, consecutive to any other sentences, for possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime of violence.
The investigation was a cooperative effort between the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Flathead County Sheriff's Office, the Missoula County Sheriff's Office, the Mineral County Sheriff's Office, and the Montana Highway Patrol.