CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Late yesterday, a federal jury in the Western District of North Carolina convicted Anthony Lamont Caldwell, 48, of Charlotte, of armed bank robbery and firearms charges, announced R. Andrew Murray, U.S. Attorney for the Western District of North Carolina. U.S. District Judge Max O. Cogburn, Jr. presided over the trial.
U.S. Attorney Murray is joined in making today’s announcement by John A. Strong, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation in North Carolina, and Chief Kerr Putney of the Charlotte Mecklenburg Police Department.
According to filed court documents and evidence presented at trial, Caldwell planned the bank robbery, recruited two teenagers to rob the bank, and served as the getaway car driver. Court records show that on December 9, 2016, Caldwell’s co-conspirators entered a Wells Fargo Bank branch located at 10210 Couloak Drive in Charlotte. Both were armed, and as they approached the teller area of the bank they pointed the firearms at the tellers behind the counter and demanded money. The tellers complied with the bank robbers’ demands and handed Caldwell’s co-conspirators $5,791.60 in cash. The two men fled the bank in a car driven by Caldwell. Shortly after the robbery, law enforcement located Caldwell hiding in a wooded area near a bag which contained $5,614 in cash and a GPS tracker from the bank. They also located the vehicle Caldwell was driving nearby.
According to court documents, Caldwell told law enforcement that he had been carjacked while picking up a pizza, and claimed that he had been forced out of his vehicle at gunpoint by two males and into the backseat of the car. Witness testimony and trial evidence established that Caldwell had not been carjacked. Over the course of the investigation, law enforcement recovered from clothing and other items in Caldwell’s vehicle along with the two revolvers used to perpetrate the robbery.
The jury convicted Caldwell of bank robbery conspiracy, bank robbery, possession of a firearm in furtherance of a crime of violence, and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. According to court records, Caldwell has two previous federal convictions for bank robbery in 1997, and attempted bank robbery in 2004. Caldwell’s co-conspirators are facing state charges.
Caldwell will remain in custody until his sentencing date, which has not been set. The bank robbery conspiracy charge carries a maximum prison term of five years; the armed bank robbery charge carries a maximum prison term of 25 years; the charge of possession of a firearm in furtherance of a crime of violence offense carries maximum prison term of five years and the possession of a firearm by a felon charge carries a maximum prison term of 10 years.
The FBI and CMPD investigated the case. Assistant U.S. Attorneys William Stetzer and William Bozin are in charge of the prosecution.