W. Warwick Man Charged with Bank Robbery
John Ryder allegedly threatened bank tellers with a machete
PROVIDENCE, R.I. – John Ryder, 28, of West Warwick, was ordered detained in federal custody today following an initial appearance in U.S. District Court in Providence on a charge of bank robbery. It is alleged that on May 2, 2016, Ryder, while wielding a machete, threatened bank tellers employed at a BankRI branch in Coventry while robbing the bank of nearly $6,000 in cash.
Ryder was arrested earlier today at his home by FBI agents and Coventry Police Department detectives.
Ryder’s arrest and detention are announced by United States Attorney Peter F. Neronha, Coventry Police Chief John S. MacDonald, and Harold H. Shaw, Special Agent in Charge of the Boston Field Office of the FBI.
According to court documents, an investigation by the FBI and Coventry Police determined that beginning on April 29, 2016, and on the days leading up to the robbery, Ryder allegedly spent a considerable amount of time in and around a shopping plaza where the bank is located and in a wooded area directly behind the plaza. It is alleged that Ryder can be seen on video surveillance footage on numerous occasions in and around the plaza, at times with a backpack and camouflaged-patterned hat. It is also alleged that Ryder can be seen spending a considerable amount of time looking in and around the bank.
According to court documents, it is alleged that on May 2, Ryder entered the bank while wearing a mask, dark blue pants, hooded sweatshirt and red jacket, and carrying a machete. It is alleged that he threatened bank tellers with the machete while demanding cash. It is alleged that after robbing the bank of $5,937, he fled from the bank into the wooded area behind the shopping plaza. A short time later, police discovered a backpack and camouflaged-patterned hat in the wooded area behind the plaza. Later that evening, it is alleged that Ryder is seen on video surveillance footage running from the area and getting into a vehicle. The owner of the vehicle allegedly confirmed that he drove Ryder from the area.
On May 6, 2016, law enforcement interviewed Ryder. On May 10, 2016, police obtained a federal search warrant to search Ryder’s cell phone. It is alleged that on the phone they discovered pictures of an individual wearing the same clothing and mask as the alleged bank robber. The photographs were taken in the same area where the backpack and camouflaged-patterned hat were located the day of the robbery.
A criminal complaint is merely an allegation and is not evidence of guilt. A defendant is entitled to a fair trial in which it will be the government’s burden to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.
The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Milind M. Shah.
Coventry Police and the FBI were assisted by the West Warwick, Warwick, West Greenwich and Cranston Police Departments and the Rhode Island State Police in the investigation of this matter.
Jim Martin (401) 709-5357
on Twitter @USAO_RI