Suspects in bank robbery investigated in other holdups

Pair accused of stealing $37,086 from Wachovia

October 01, 2003|By Gail Gibson | Gail Gibson,SUN STAFF

Two Baltimore men arrested after a Monday morning bank robbery that netted more than $30,000 could be connected to as many as a dozen other bank holdups in the area, according to federal court records made public yesterday.

Authorities charged Teledo H. Smith, 36, and Kevin Maurice Lawson, 35, in U.S. District Court in Baltimore with robbing the Wachovia Bank branch at 5439 Harford Road Monday morning. An FBI affidavit alleged that the men took $37,086 from the bank, although they dropped about $3,725 on the floor of the bank as they fled.

In the affidavit, FBI Special Agent Patrick S. Dugan said Smith and Lawson were possible suspects in 12 similar armed bank robberies. The affidavit did not elaborate on the other robbery cases, however, and Smith and Lawson were charged only in connection with Monday's holdup.

According to the FBI affidavit, two men walked into the Wachovia branch about 9 a.m. and announced a robbery. One of the two pulled out a black, long-barreled revolver and ordered employees and customers in the bank lobby to drop to the floor. The men then filled a backpack with cash.

Outside the bank, witnesses told investigators that they saw the men drive away in a blue Chevrolet Lumina. Within an hour, authorities found the blue car parked in the 4000 block of Cranston Drive near the last known address they had for Smith - who had been identified as a potential suspect from earlier robberies, according to the affidavit.

As police closed in on the car, Smith and Lawson came out of a house on the block, the affidavit said. The two men climbed into the Chevrolet and led authorities on a brief car chase before they jumped out and ran, the affidavit said.

Authorities stopped Smith, who was carrying $470 in cash, in the 600 block of Linnard St. Lawson was caught later in the day near Edmonson Avenue and Hilton Road. According to the affidavit, he was carrying two black trash bags - one of which was stuffed with $13,729 in cash.

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