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Justice News

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

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Five Men Indicted On Federal Bank Robbery Charges

HARRISBURG – The United States Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania announced today that a federal grand jury in Harrisburg has returned two indictments against five men in connection with bank robberies near York and Lebanon.      

According to U.S. Attorney Peter Smith, Derek Pelker, age 26, Wernersville, Ryan Miller, a/k/a “Otis,” age 24, Robinson Township, and Andrew Ishman, age 31, Wrightsville, were indicted for conspiracy, armed bank robbery, and possession of a firearm in furtherance of a crime of violence in relation to the robbery of the Susquehanna Bank (now the BB&T Bank), in East Prospect on April 24, 2015.  Pelker and Miller are also charged with possessing firearms as convicted felons. 

The grand jury also returned a separate indictment charging Derek Pelker, his brother, Keith Pelker, age 27, Wernersville, and Shannon Gadzouris, age 23, Shillington, with conspiracy and armed bank robbery in relation to the robbery of the M&T Bank in Lebanon on April 5, 2016.  According to the indictment, the defendants used a CO2 gun which appeared to be a firearm to commit that robbery. 

The investigation was conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation Capital City Violent Crimes Task Force, the Pennsylvania State Police, the South Lebanon Township Police Department, the U.S. Marshals Fugitive Task Force, and the Lebanon and York County District Attorney’s Offices.  The Capital City Violent Crimes Task Force consists of representatives from the FBI’s Harrisburg Field Office and the Harrisburg Police Department.  The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Scott R. Ford.   

This case was also brought as part of the Violent Crime Reduction Partnership (“VCRP”), a district wide initiative to combat the spread of violent crime in the Middle District of Pennsylvania. Led by the United States Attorney’s Office, the VCRP consists of federal, state and local law enforcement agencies whose mission is to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who commit violent crimes.

Indictments are only allegations. All persons charged are presumed to be innocent unless and until found guilty in court.

A sentence following a finding of guilt is imposed by the Judge after consideration of the applicable federal sentencing statutes and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines.

The maximum penalty for the offenses related to the East Prospect robbery is life imprisonment, a term of supervised release following imprisonment, and a fine.  The maximum penalty for the offenses related to the Lebanon robbery is 25 years imprisonment, a term of supervised release following imprisonment, and a fine.  Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the Judge is also required to consider and weigh a number of factors, including the nature, circumstances and seriousness of the offense; the history and characteristics of the defendant; and the need to punish the defendant, protect the public and provide for the defendant's educational, vocational and medical needs. For these reasons, the statutory maximum penalty for the offense is not an accurate indicator of the potential sentence for a specific defendant.


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Violent Crime
Updated August 24, 2016