West Warwick Resident Indicted in Coventry Bank Robbery
PROVIDENCE, R.I. – A federal grand jury in Providence today returned an indictment charging John Ryder, 28, of West Warwick, with bank robbery. It is alleged in the indictment that on May 2, 2016, Ryder robbed a BankRI branch office in Coventry by force, violence and intimidation. It is alleged that Ryder, while wielding a machete, threatened bank tellers and robbed the bank of nearly $6,000 in cash.
Ryder’s indictment 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.
According to information presented to the court at the time of Ryder’s initial appearance in federal court on May 13, 2016, an investigation by Coventry Police and the FBI 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 on May 2, Ryder entered the bank carrying a machete and wearing a mask, dark blue pants, hooded sweatshirt and red jacket. 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 into a wooded area behind the shopping plaza. Later that evening, it is alleged, 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 law enforcement obtained a court authorized search warrant to search Ryder’s cell phone, on which they discovered pictures of an individual wearing the same clothing and mask as the alleged bank robber. The photograph was taken in a wooded area behind the shopping plaza where the bank is located.
Ryder was arrested by Coventry Police and FBI agents on May 13, 2016.
An indictment 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.
Ryder, who is detained in federal custody, will be arraigned in U.S. District Court at a later date.
The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Milind M. Shah.
Coventry Police and the FBI were assisted in their investigation by the West Warwick, Warwick, West Greenwich and Cranston Police Departments and the Rhode Island State Police.
Jim Martin (401) 709-5357
on Twitter @USAO_RI