HARRISBURG - Members of a bank-robbery ring used full-head silicone theatrical masks during 11 heists going back to the summer of 2007 that netted them more than a half-million dollars, federal prosecutors said yesterday in announcing charges against nine people.
FBI Special Agent George Venizelos described the suspects as "a criminal group" that carried guns and terrorized bank employees and customers, reaping comparatively large amounts of money.
U.S. Attorney Peter Smith in Harrisburg would not describe how the group - all from the Harrisburg area - was organized and coordinated. He did say some are facing more serious charges and more counts than others.
He also would not say whether the robbers got into bank vaults.
"There were some instances where there was a much deeper intrusion into the banking institution," he said.
Three of the robberies netted more than $100,000 apiece, and the total stolen in the 11 robberies was more than $577,000.
Most of the banks are located in the Harrisburg area, along with banks in Carlisle, Williamsport and North Lebanon. A Susquehanna Bank branch in Harrisburg was struck twice in two days, with robbers getting away with $18,000 on Dec. 2 and $52,000 on Dec. 3.
Two men are considered fugitives: Darrell Dewayne Fears, 32, and Danyel T. Proctor, 38.
Three were arrested in late February or early March, and four were arrested on Wednesday, a week after a grand jury in Harrisburg issued a superseding indictment in the case. Smith declined to say whether any defendants are cooperating with prosecutors.
Seven of the defendants were charged with one or more counts of bank robbery: Martinel Lamar "Telly" Hill, 30; Miguel Angel "Littles" Rosario, 33; Derrick Ryan "Piglet" Jackson, 21; Curtis D. "Traj" Hall, 24; Jamar Edwards Hinds, 23; Robert M. Stewart, 43; and Proctor.