The Herald Bulletin

Overnight Update

Cops, courts and fires

April 15, 2014

19-year-old convicted bank robber receives 15-year sentence

Teen pleaded guilty in March

ANDERSON — The second of four co-defendants in an October armed bank robbery was sentenced on Monday.

Nineteen-year-old Edwin Le’Anthony “Lee” Ricard of Anderson received a 15-year sentence from Madison Circuit Court 4 Judge David Happe for his part in the robbery of the First Merchants Bank at 2825 Nichol Ave. on the morning of Oct. 28.

Ricard pleaded guilty in March, admitting he committed the crime with the help of three other people. He said he and 23-year-old Gerald L. Reed carried out the actual robbery, while 32-year-old Latorya A. Rayford provided a car and supplies and 34-year-old Ashonta K. Jackson masterminded the plan.

Reed received the same sentence after pleading guilty earlier in the year. Jackson and Rayford face trial dates of April 29 and Aug. 19, respectively.

Ricard said he and Reed had been committing crimes for Jackson for some time. He said Jackson planned the heist and drove him and Reed, and Rayford provided gloves and duct tape to cover the getaway vehicle’s license plate.

On the day of the robbery, Ricard and Reed rushed into the bank, demanded money from tellers at gunpoint and escaped in a white Ford Taurus. At one point, one of the men struck a female teller in the head with the butt of a handgun. The teller was treated for minor injuries.

Minutes after the robbery, a witness reported to police that two men had abandoned a Taurus with a matching description in the 2200 block of West 12th Street and left the area in a four-door black-and-blue Ford Taurus.

According to a release from the Anderson Police Department after the robbery, numerous eyewitness accounts enabled detectives to identify both Reed and Ricard as the two suspects in the holdup. Most of the money stolen during the robbery was believed to have been recovered during the investigation.

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