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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Rhode Island

Monday, October 31, 2016

West Warwick Resident Admits to Robbing Coventry Bank

PROVIDENCE, R.I. – John Ryder, 28, of West Warwick, pleaded guilty in federal court in Providence today to bank robbery by force, violence and intimidation. Ryder admitted to the court that he robbed a BankRI branch office in Coventry while wielding a machete on May 2, 2016. Ryder robbed the bank of nearly $6,000 in cash.

Appearing before U.S. District Court Chief Judge William E. Smith, Ryder pleaded guilty as charged in an indictment returned by a federal grand jury on June 7, 2016. No plea agreement was filed in this matter.

Ryder’s guilty plea is 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.

At the time of his guilty plea, Ryder admitted to the court that beginning on April 29, 2016, and on the days leading up to the robbery, he 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. Ryder admitted to the court that on May 2, 2016, he entered the bank carrying a machete which he wielded while demanding cash from bank tellers. After robbing the bank of $5,937, he fled into the wooded area behind the shopping plaza.

According to information presented to the court, later that evening Ryder is seen on video surveillance running from the area and getting into a vehicle. On May 6, 2016, law enforcement interviewed Ryder. Four days later obtained a court authorized search warrant to search Ryder’s cell phone. On Ryder’s cell phone they discovered pictures of an individual wearing the same clothing and mask as worn by the bank robber. The photograph was taken in the wooded area behind the shopping plaza where the bank is located.

Ryder was arrested by Coventry Police Detectives and FBI agents, with the assistance of the West Warwick Police Department, on May 13, 2016.

Ryder, who has been detained in federal custody since his arrest, is scheduled to be sentenced by U.S. District Court Chief Judge William E. Smith on January 20, 2017.

The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Milind M. Shah.




Jim Martin (401) 709-5357


on Twitter @USAO_RI

Violent Crime
Press Release Number: 
Updated October 31, 2016