Two Brooklyn Men Charged With Armed Robbery at Church
Defendants Allegedly Stole Jewelry at Gunpoint from Clergy Members During Live-Streamed Church Service
Earlier today, in federal court in Brooklyn, an indictment was unsealed charging Juwan Anderson and Say-Quan Pollack for their roles in an armed robbery at a church in Brooklyn (the “Church”) on July 24, 2022. The defendants were arrested today and will be arraigned this afternoon before United States Magistrate Judge Ramon E. Reyes, Jr. A third defendant remains at large.
Breon Peace, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, John B. DeVito, Special Agent-in-Charge, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, New York Division (ATF), and Keechant L. Sewell, Commissioner, New York City Police Department (NYPD), announced the arrests and charges.
“As alleged, the defendants brought guns into a place of worship, stealing from two members of the clergy, and terrifying the congregation in the process,” stated United States Attorney Peace. “I commend the Special Agents and Detectives for their outstanding efforts in identifying the perpetrators who committed a crime that shocks the conscience for its brazenness. This Office will always work with our law enforcement partners to protect our houses of worship, prosecute those who engage in gun violence and and ensure the safety of all members of our community.”
“Armed robbery is an intolerable crime, but to commit such an act during a religious service is incomprehensible,” stated ATF Special Agent-in-Charge DeVito. “The men and woman of ATF stand side by side with all of our partners to identify, investigate and apprehend those that commit such brazen acts of violence within our communities. These arrests are due to the excellent investigative work by ATF/NYPD’s Strategic Pattern Armed Robbery Technical Apprehension (SPARTA) Group. I would like to thank the United States Attorney’s Office for their work in prosecuting this case.”
“The indictment unsealed today affirms the NYPD’s unwavering commitment to working collaboratively, across several law enforcement agencies, to focus on those few individuals charged with wreaking violence in our city,” stated NYPD Commissioner Sewell. “I commend the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York, the New York Field Division of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms, and all of our NYPD officers and detectives who have investigated this important case and removed these defendants from our streets."
As alleged in the indictment and court filings, Anderson, Pollack and a co-conspirator—masked and clad all in black—entered the Church brandishing firearms, while parishioners attended Church services in person and via a live-stream. The lead pastor (“Individual 1” in the Indictment) dove to the floor, while his wife (“Individual 2” in the Indictment) shielded their infant daughter who was sitting on her lap. Pollack stood guard at the doorway, pointing a firearm in the direction of the parishioners and the pulpit. The co-conspirator, wielding a gun, approached Individual 2 and pulled jewelry off her person. Pollack then approached Individual 1 as he lay on the floor and made sure that all of his jewelry had been removed by Anderson and the co-conspirator.
The charges in the indictment are allegations, and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty. If convicted, each defendant faces a maximum sentence of life imprisonment.
The government’s case is being handled by the Office’s General Crimes Section. Assistant United States Attorney Rebecca M. Schuman is prosecuting the case.
Brooklyn, New York
SAY-QUAN POLLACK (also known as “Say-Quan Pollock”)
Brooklyn, New York
E.D.N.Y. Docket No. 22-CR-428 (WFK)