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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Southern District of Georgia

Monday, December 18, 2017

Three Armed Bank Robberies Lead To Multiple Federal Indictments And Convictions

Savannah, GA – Javel Roberts, 17, of Valdosta, Georgia, entered a guilty plea Thursday, December 14, 2017, before Senior U.S. District Court Judge William T. Moore, Jr., for the armed robbery of the SunTrust Bank in Garden City, Georgia, on September 7, 2017, and for brandishing a firearm during the bank robbery.  In addition to the SunTrust Bank robbery, Roberts was charged with the armed robberies of the Wells Fargo Bank at 10422 Abercorn Street in Savannah on July 25 and August 8, 2017.  Although a juvenile under federal law, the U.S. Attorney’s Office prosecuted Roberts as an adult.  He faces up to life imprisonment.

Roberts’ guilty plea follows the guilty pleas of India Janette Henderson, 31, and Ira King, 39, of Savannah, both of whom pled guilty before Judge Moore on November 28, 2017, to aiding and abetting the SunTrust armed robbery, and both of whom face up to twenty-five years in prison.  Jamal Henderson, 30, of Savannah, previously pled guilty to being a convicted felon in possession of a handgun and faces up to ten years in prison. 

Oraefein Jabre King, 20, of Savannah, Georgia, was arrested in Birmingham, Alabama on December 12, 2017.  King was charged in an eight-count indictment by a federal grand jury in Savannah with conspiring to rob the Wells Fargo Bank and SunTrust Bank, aiding and abetting the armed bank robberies committed on July 25, August 8, and September 7, 2017, aiding and abetting the carrying of a firearm during the bank robberies, and unlawfully transferring a handgun to a juvenile.  If convicted, King faces not less than 57 years in prison and up to life imprisonment.

United States Attorney Bobby L. Christine said, “Our office will aggressively prosecute those who commit violent crimes in our neighborhoods and anyone who aids and abets them.  Those who think they may avoid federal prosecution because of their youth, let this prosecution serve notice.”

“It very disconcerting that anyone would brandish a weapon during a bank robbery, let alone a 17-year old youth,” said David J. LeValley, Special Agent in Charge of FBI Atlanta.  “The disregard for employees and customers is reprehensible. These arrests and prosecution of this case demonstrate the determination of the FBI Southeast Georgia Violent Crime Task Force and its local law enforcement partners to make our community a safer place.”

United States Attorney Christine emphasized that an indictment is only an accusation and is not evidence of guilty.  A defendant is entitled to a fair trial, during which it will be the Government’s burden to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. 

The investigation into the three bank robberies was led by the FBI Southeast Georgia Violent Crime Task Force, along with assistance from Savannah-Chatham Police Department, and Garden City Police Department.  Assistant United States Attorney Chris Howard is prosecuting these cases for the United States. For any questions, please contact Appellate Chief R. Brian Tanner at (912) 652-4422.

Updated December 18, 2017