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Press Release

Joplin Man Pleads Guilty to Attempted Armed Bank Robbery Foiled by Customer

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Western District of Missouri

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – Tom Larson, Acting United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, announced that a Joplin, Mo., man pleaded guilty in federal court today to the attempted armed robbery of Pinnacle Bank in Joplin.

Sean LaDue, 29, of Joplin, pleaded guilty before U.S. Magistrate Judge David P. Rush to the charges contained in a Jan. 18, 2017, superseding indictment.

By pleading guilty today, LaDue admitted that he used a firearm to rob Pinnacle Bank, 1316 E. 32nd Street, Joplin, on Nov. 14, 2016. LaDue also pleaded guilty to using a firearm during a crime of violence.

LaDue and an accomplice entered the bank at approximately 3:50 p.m. and announced, “This is a robbery, get down!” The sole customer of the bank struggled with one of the robbers in the bank lobby. During the struggle, the robber produced a firearm and fired three shots. Both robbers then fled from the bank without taking any money.

Police officers located and arrested LaDue after a brief foot chase on Nov. 16, 2016.

Under federal statutes, LaDue is subject to a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years in federal prison without parole, up to a sentence of up to life in federal prison without parole. The maximum statutory sentence is prescribed by Congress and is provided here for informational purposes, as the sentencing of the defendant will be determined by the court based on the advisory sentencing guidelines and other statutory factors. A sentencing hearing will be scheduled after the completion of a presentence investigation by the United States Probation Office.

This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney James J. Kelleher. It was investigated by the Joplin, Mo., Police Department and the FBI.

Updated March 22, 2017

Violent Crime