News and Press Releases

News Release
U.S. Department of Justice
Peter F. Neronha
United States Attorney
District of Rhode Island

April 25, 2010



Six Banks Robbed; Seventh Foiled by Tellers

PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Seven people have been charged and were arraigned last week in U.S. District Court on federal bank robbery charges. The charges result from ongoing federal and local law enforcement investigations into “note-job” bank robberies. A “note-job” bank robbery occurs when a note demanding money is passed or an oral demand is made but a weapon is not shown.

U.S. Attorney Peter F. Neronha announced the charges, which were brought in connection with bank robberies in Barrington, Coventry, Cranston, Lincoln, Providence and West Warwick from October 2009 to February 2010. A seventh robbery was thwarted by tellers at a Pawtucket bank when they told a would-be-robber they didn’t have any money to give him and he left empty handed.

“Whether you show a weapon, pass a note to a teller or utter words to the effect that you are robbing a bank you threaten the safety of everyone around you and cause a great deal of emotional harm. It won’t be tolerated,” said U.S. Attorney Peter F. Neronha. “Every bank robbery, regardless by what means, is investigated and prosecuted with the same intensity.”

The defendants entered not guilty pleas in U.S. District Court before Magistrate Judge David L. Martin. Bank robbery is punishable by a maximum of 20 years in federal prison.

U.S. Attorney Peter Neronha commended agents from the FBI and investigating officers from Barrington, Coventry, Cranston, Lincoln, Pawtucket, Providence and West Warwick police departments for their diligence in successfully investigating these bank robberies and identifying these defendants.

The cases are being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Gerard B. Sullivan.

A Complaint is merely an allegation and a defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

Defendant/Complaint Information:

Shirley A. Green, 48
Lincoln, R.I.
Bank Robbery (2 counts)

Navigant Federal Credit Union
Front Street, Lincoln, R.I.

Pawtucket Credit Union
Smithfield Avenue, Pawtucket, R.I.

Mathew B. Silva, 22
West Warwick, R.I.
Amanda J. Cornell, 29,
Providence, R.I.
Bank Robbery (3 counts)

Bank of America
Washington Street, West Warwick, R.I.

Citizens Bank
Tiogue Avenue, Coventry, R.I.

Centreville Bank
Comstock Pkwy., Cranston, R.I.

Attempted Bank Robbery (1 count)
Bank of America
Newport Avenue, Pawtucket, R.I.

Christopher Barrett, 36
North Providence, R.I.
Bank Robbery (1 count)

Bank RI
Pittman Street, Providence, R.I.

Johnessa A. Iavarone, 20
Swansea, Mass.
Tiffany A. Alabanese, 21
Fall River Mass.
Brandon M. Chaisty, 21
Fall River, Mass.
Bank Robbery (1 count)

Webster Bank
Country Road, Barrington, R.I.

Contact: 401-709-5357

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