Berlin Man Pleads Guilty to Armed Bank Robbery and to Brandishing a Firearm
Also Admits to Committing a Carjacking
Baltimore, Maryland – Jeff V. Hare, age 53, of Berlin, Maryland, pleaded guilty today to armed bank robbery and brandishing a firearm during a crime of violence.
The guilty plea was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein; Special Agent in Charge Kevin Perkins of the Federal Bureau of Investigation; Worcester County Sheriff Reggie T. Mason, Sr.; Colonel William M. Pallozzi, Superintendent of the Maryland State Police; and Worcester County State’s Attorney Beau Oglesby.
According his plea agreement, on March 13, 2015, Hare entered the BB&T branch located at 11000 block of Racetrack Road in Berlin, wearing a ski mask and brandishing a handgun.
Hare told the bank tellers present in the bank’s lobby that he had a gun and he was robbing the bank, demanding that the tellers give him only fifty and one hundred dollar bills, and that they not give him any dye packs. Hare moved through the lobby from employee to employee pointing the handgun at each employee and demanding money. Hare also demanded each teller give him their car keys and purse, but the tellers told Hare they did not have them available. Hare stole approximately $2,850 in cash from the bank.
Hare admitted that after robbing the tellers in the lobby, Hare found a bank employee who had locked herself in a back room of the bank. Hare forced open the locked door and demanded her car keys and her purse. The employee gave Hare her purse, which contained cash and personal effects, and the keys to her car, a 2007 Kia Spectra, which was parked in the bank’s parking lot. Hare exited the bank and fled in the stolen 2007 Kia Spectra, which he abandoned at a nearby business.
Hare was arrested later that evening at a residence in Ocean Pines, Maryland. At the time of his arrest, Hare was still in possession of the money stolen from the bank
Hare has been detained since his arrest. During that time, Hare attempted to impede the investigation of the armed bank robbery and carjacking by seeking to arrange for the disposal of evidence of the crimes. On May 1, 2015, an associate of Hare visited him at the Worcester County Detention Center in Snow Hill, Maryland. During that visit, Hare told his associate that he was being framed and that unidentified persons had a box of garbage that would incriminate him. Hare asked the person to retrieve the box from an address in Ocean Pines, which was Hare’s former residence. On May 6, 2015, Hare called his associate and asked him, “By going to that address, did you get rid of the trash,” referring to the box Hare had asked the associate to retrieve. The box contained the ski mask Hare wore during the robbery and carjacking, a .38 caliber revolver believed to have been used during the robbery, and the purse Hare stole from the bank employee, including her driver’s license.
Hare faces a maximum sentence of 25 years in prison for armed bank robbery; and a mandatory minimum of seven years and up to life in prison for brandishing a firearm during a crime of violence. U.S. District Judge James K. Bredar has scheduled sentencing for April 12, 2016, at 9:30 a.m.
United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein praised the FBI, Worcester County Sheriff’s Office, Maryland State Police and the Worcester County State’s Attorney’s Office for their work in the investigation and prosecution. Mr. Rosenstein thanked Assistant United States Attorneys Zachary A. Myers and Matthew J. Maddox, who are prosecuting the case.