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Criminal Law Keyed to Osler
United States v. Chappell
Citation:307 Fed. Appx. 275 (11th Cir. 2009)
There was a bank robbery of SunTrust Bank on August 14, 2006. That morning, an employee saw an “African-American man” run into the bank with a white towel over his head and a white shirt covered in what appeared to be blood, crying for help. He staggered around trying to get through the teller door, and when that did not work, he threatened the pepper-spray the teller if she did not give him her drawer, she complied. Teller described the robber as being about 5’5″ with a small build. The robber got $7,980 and ran out of the bank, but of this money $100 of it were bait bills with serial numbers on them that could be tracked.
A bank customer was walking up to the bank as the robber ran out towards the dumpster. The customer saw the robber wearing all black and that he rode away on a bicycle. There was a cannister of pepper spray, white t-shirt covered in ketchup, and tennis shoe prints found behind the dumpster. No eye-witnesses saw the robber’s face.
A friend of the defendant stated he saw the defendant the morning of the robbery, wearing black clothes and a “white scarf thing” over his head. The defendant asked the friend if he wanted to make some money that day, and the friend said no.
Later that afternoon, an individual living near the bank, Mr. Hollings, found a man sitting on his porch, very sweaty. After approaching the man, he asked Mr. Hollings for a ride to the Fort Hill area and that he had money. Mr. Hollings refused and asked the man to leave, which he did. Mr. Hollings was approached by police officers later that day about the robbery, and Mr. Hollings complied with the officers, later correctly identified the defendant in a photo lineup and at trial.
Friends of the defendant testified that he never had much money, did not have a job, did not have a car, was small, was from Fort Hill, rode a bicycle, and frequently wore all black. When the defendant was arrested he had new clothing and a new car. No bills he had used or had with him matched the serial numbers. The defendant bought a car the day of the robbery in all cash, but $1,000 of which did not match serial numbers.
Three additional witnesses who were cellmates of the defendant, testified that Chappell confessed to the robbery and had specific information about it including the towel around the defendant’s face, the ketchup and fake injury attempt, the threat of using pepper spray, that he rode his bike after, he threw out the serial number bills, and that he using the money to buy new clothes and a car.
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