Serial Armed Bank Robber Sentenced to Over 25 Years after Attempting to Murder Pennsylvania State Trooper During Arrest
PHILADELPHIA – United States Attorney Jennifer Arbittier Williams announced that Christopher Larue, 44, of Lansdale, PA, was sentenced to 25 years and one day in prison, five years of supervised release, and was ordered to pay a $7,500 fine by United States District Judge Gene E.K. Pratter for committing an armed bank robbery in Bucks County and then nearly killing a Pennsylvania State Trooper in Montgomery County directly thereafter.
In October 2021, the defendant pleaded guilty to one count of brandishing a firearm during a crime of violence and one count of armed bank robbery. According to court documents, in the early morning hours of October 19, 2020, Larue entered QNB Bank in Perkasie, PA, wearing dark clothing and a black mask as employees were arriving for work. The defendant brandished a firearm and robbed the bank of over $11,000 in U.S. currency. He then fled in his vehicle. A GPS tracking devices hidden with the stolen money quickly led Pennsylvania State Police to the defendant, who had driven to his job site in Conshohocken, PA. When the State Police arrived and attempted to arrest him, Larue pointed a gun at the head of a trooper and pulled the trigger, but the gun mis-fired and troopers were able to handcuff Larue. In and around the defendant’s work locker, investigators found the stolen money, additional ammunition, and the clothing and mask Larue wore during the robbery.
Larue previously served over 12 years in federal prison after being convicted in 2009 of five additional bank robberies and was on supervised release at the time of this offense.
“This sentencing is especially poignant during a week when we have lost two Pennsylvania State Troopers who were bravely executing their duty in the face of extreme danger,” said U.S. Attorney Williams. “In this case, the defendant acted with complete disregard and callousness for the lives of the Pennsylvania State Troopers and the bank employees whom he threatened with a firearm. But for a mis-fired gun, the outcome could have been yet another tragic loss of life. The U.S. Attorney’s Office will not tolerate this kind of violent lawlessness.”
“Christopher Larue aimed a loaded gun at a state trooper’s head, asked him if he wanted to die that day, and repeatedly pulled the trigger. It was very nearly a tragedy, but thankfully the weapon didn’t fire,” said Jacqueline Maguire, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Philadelphia Division. “That was just after Larue had held three bank employees at gunpoint during a robbery — and that was after a previous string of bank robberies for which he’d served time. This is a dangerous serial offender who needs to be off the street. The FBI will continue working with the Pennsylvania State Police and all our law enforcement partners to keep violent criminals like Larue from committing further harm.”
The case was investigated by the Perkasie Borough Police Department, the Pennsylvania State Police, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation, with assistance from the Montgomery County District Attorney’s Office and the Bucks County District Attorney’s Office, and is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Michelle L. Morgan.