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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Middle District of Georgia

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, March 25, 2021

Columbus Resident Pleads Guilty To Robbing Wells Fargo Bank

COLUMBUS, Ga. – The man who robbed a Columbus Wells Fargo bank is facing a maximum 20 years in prison for his crime, said Peter D. Leary, the Acting U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of Georgia.

Emory Fredrick, 57, of Columbus, pleaded guilty to one count bank robbery before U.S. District Judge Clay D. Land on Tuesday, March 23. Fredrick is facing a maximum 20 years imprisonment to be followed by three years of supervised release and a $250,000 fine. There is no parole in the federal system. Sentencing has been scheduled for July 14, 2021 in Columbus, Georgia.

“Robbing banks puts employees, community members and even the bank robber in danger. Such actions will not be tolerated,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Leary. “I want to thank the Columbus Police Department and the FBI for quickly apprehending the defendant and helping restore order to the Columbus community.”

“Fredrick's actions traumatized both bank employees and customers,” said Chris Hacker, Special Agent in Charge of FBI Atlanta. “Thanks to the FBI, Columbus Police Department and the public he was apprehended quickly and unable to threaten anyone else.”

“I am pleased with the successful prosecution of this case and I really appreciate the dedicated work of our officers and FBI. We will continue our partnership as we work to make Columbus a safe place to live,” said Chief Freddie Blackmon, Columbus Police Department. 

On March 11, 2019, Fredrick entered the Wells Fargo Bank at 5538 Whittlesey Boulevard in Columbus, Georgia. He walked up to a teller and said, “This is a stickup.” Fredrick then instructed the teller to give him all large bills. The teller believed that Fredrick could have been armed because he kept messing with one of his pockets. The defendant collected the money into a grey bag he brought, a total of $1138, and walked out of the bank. The Columbus Police Department and FBI apprehended Fredrick within a few hours of the robbery, utilizing both images captured on security cameras at the scene as well as photos and verbal descriptions from bystanders leading to his quick capture.

The case was investigated by the Columbus Police Department and FBI. Assistant U.S. Attorney Amy Helmick is prosecuting the case for the Government. Questions can be directed to Pamela Lightsey, Public Information Officer, United States Attorney’s Office, at (478) 621-2603 or Melissa Hodges, Public Affairs Director (Contractor), United States Attorney’s Office, at (478) 765-2362.

Topic(s): 
Violent Crime
Updated March 26, 2021