Three indicted in multiple credit union robberies in region
U.S. Attorney James P. Kennedy, Jr. today that a federal grand jury has returned two indictments charging three defendants for their roles in multiple credit union robberies and attempted robberies, including one in Angola.
Anthony D. Wilson, 33, of Buffalo, is charged with conspiracy to commit bank robbery, aggravated bank robbery, brandishing a firearm, being a felon in possession of a firearm, and entering a bank with intent to commit a larceny. The charges carry a maximum penalty of life in prison.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Joshua A. Violanti, who is handling the case, stated that according to the indictment against defendant Wilson, on Oct. 26, 2017, Wilson and co-defendants Adrian Applewhite and Khalil Holland drove to the Lake Shore Federal Credit Union in Angola. Khalil Holland, wearing a hoodie and a medical facemask, entered the Lake Shore Federal Credit Union, demanded money, and brandished a semi-automatic pistol. The pistol was given to Khalil by defendant Wilson. In October 2007, was convicted in Erie County Court and as a result is legally prohibited from carrying a firearm.
Applewhite previously pleaded guilty for his role in the robbery and is awaiting sentencing. Khalil Holland was previously charged and convicted by the Erie County District Attorney’s Office.
In a separate, superseding indictment, Myron McCollum, 33, and Ronald Morris, a/k/a Cracks, 46, both of Buffalo, are charged with conspiracy to commit bank robbery, being a felon-in-possession of a firearm, brandishing a firearm, bank robbery and incidental crimes, and aiding and abetting. The charges carry a maximum of life in prison.
On Feb. 27, 2019, armed with a firearm, defendant Morris and co-defendant Applewhite entered the Tonawanda Community Federal Credit Union at 315 Delaware Street in Tonawanda, and forcibly stole money from the credit union.
On July 25, 2019, co-defendant Applewhite drove defendants Morris and McCollum to the South Towns Community Federal Credit Union at 3040 South Park Avenue in Lackawanna. Armed with pepper spray and at least one firearm, Morris and McCollum entered the credit union, pushed and pepper sprayed employees, and forcibly stole money from the credit union.
On Nov. 6, 2019, co-defendant Applewhite drove Morris and McCollum, and another co-defendant to the Clarence Community and School Federal Credit Union on Sheridan Drive in Clarence for purposes of committing a robbery, but determined there were too many people at the credit union to conduct the robbery. That same day, Morris and Applewhite attempted to rob the Good Neighbors Credit Union at 286 Grant St. in Buffalo.
The following day, on Nov. 7, 2019, Applewhite, Morris and McCollum went back to the Clarence Community and School Federal Credit Union. Armed with firearms, Morris and McCollum forcibly stole money from the credit union.
During the course of the conspiracy, defendants Morris and McCollum, along with co-defendant Adrian Applewhite, scouted or attempted to rob other financial institutions in Bradford, Pa., and Rochester, Niagara Falls, and Kenmore, NY.
Applewhite also previously pleaded guilty to his role in the robberies of the South Towns Community Federal Credit Union and the Clarence Community and School Federal Credit Union and is awaiting sentencing.
The indictment against Wilson and superseding indictment against Morris and McCollum are the result of an investigation by the New York State Police, under the direction of Major James Hall; the Federal Bureau of Investigation, under the direction of Special Agent-in-Charge Stephen Belongia; the Lackawanna Police Department, under the direction of Chief Mark Packard; the Evans Police Department, under the direction of Chief Douglas J. Czora; the City of Tonawanda Police Department, under the direction of Chief William Strassburg; the Tonawanda Police Department, under the direction of Chief James P. Stauffiger; and the Erie County District Attorney’s Office, under the direction of District Attorney John Flynn.