Crime

2 Charlotte men sentenced for robbing Bank of America branch in Troutman

Two Charlotte men were sentenced to lengthy prison terms this week for robbing a Bank of America branch in Troutman in May 2013.

U.S. District Judge Richard Voorhees sentenced Darius Donnell Freeman, 33, to 37 years in prison and Freeman’s co-conspirator, Wincy Joseph, 29, to 11 years in prison, Acting U.S. Attorney Jill Westmoreland Rose announced.

Voorhees also ordered the pair to serve five years under court supervision following their release from prison and to pay $5,185.99 in restitution.

In May 2014, a federal jury convicted the men of armed bank robbery and possession of a firearm in furtherance of a crime of violence.

The jury also found Freeman guilty of carjacking and a second charge of possession of a firearm in furtherance of a crime of violence.

At about 5:15 a.m. May 20, 2013, Freeman carjacked a victim at gunpoint at a Circle K gas station on South Boulevard in Charlotte, court records show.

Later that morning, he and Joseph used the carjacked vehicle to rob the Bank of America branch in Troutman.

Soon after the bank opened, Freeman entered the bank wearing a black cap, sunglasses and gloves and brandishing a silver handgun. He jumped onto the tellers’ counter and demanded cash, records show.

Joseph entered the bank behind Freeman, dressed in a black sweatshirt with the hood pulled over his head. He also wore sunglasses and gloves and demanded cash from another bank employee.

The defendants left with $5,185.99 in cash. Police later found the carjacked vehicle abandoned on Interstate 77 in Iredell County.

The defendants were identified five days after the robbery, following a tip from a concerned resident, prosecutors said.

Freeman was arrested on June 6, 2013, and Joseph on June 13, 2013.

The investigation was led by the FBI, the Troutman Police Department and the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department.

Marusak: 704-358-5067;

Twitter: @jmarusak

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