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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Northern District of Texas

Friday, May 9, 2014

Armed Bank Robber Sentenced To Serve More Than 24 Years In Federal Prison For Robbing Banks In Lubbock And Amarillo In May 2013

LUBBOCK, Texas — Russell Eugene Heath, 45, of Lubbock, Texas, was sentenced today by U.S. District Judge Sam R. Cummings to serve a total of 295 months in federal prison, consecutive to his 24-month supervised release revocation, for his role in the takeover style robberies of two banks in May 2013.  The announcement was made today by U.S. Attorney Sarah R. Saldaña of the Northern District of Texas.

Heath pleaded guilty in November 2013 to one count of aggravated bank robbery and one count of possessing a firearm in furtherance of a crime of violence.  Co-defendant Gabriel Tenorio, 31, also of Lubbock and the getaway driver in the robberies, pleaded guilty to one count of aggravated bank robbery and was sentenced in December 2013 to 140 months in in federal prison. 

Heath’s aggravated bank robbery conviction stems from the May 1, 2013, robbery of Lubbock National Bank, located at 4420 19th Street in Lubbock.  At approximately 12:45 p.m., Heath, wearing a mask and gloves and carrying a firearm, entered the bank and pointed the gun at tellers, yelling at them to give him money.  Heath jumped over a counter, opened a teller drawer and began stuffing money in his pockets.  He then ran from the bank to a waiting vehicle driven by Tenorio.

Heath’s conviction for possessing a firearm in furtherance of a violent crime stems from the May 20, 2013, robbery of FirstBank Southwest Bank, located at 5701 SW 34th Street in Amarillo, Texas.  In that robbery, Heath entered the bank carrying a short-barreled shotgun, vaulted over the teller counter and stole money.  He then ran from the bank into a waiting vehicle, driven by Tenorio. 

The FBI, Lubbock Police Department, Amarillo Police Department and the Lubbock County Sheriff’s Office investigated.  Deputy Criminal Chief Assistant U.S. Attorney Denise Williams prosecuted.

Updated June 22, 2015