U.S. Attorney's Office
Eastern District of Virginia
(757) 441-6331
March 3, 2015

Bank Robber Sentenced to 188 Months in Prison

NEWPORT NEWS, VA—Andre Michael Harper, 36, of Blackstone, Virginia, was sentenced yesterday to 188 months in prison, followed by three years of supervised release, for robbing a BB&T Bank in Newport News. He received a concurrent sentence of 120 months in prison for possessing and trying to deposit counterfeit checks at the same BB&T Bank and a Money Mart Store in Newport News.

Dana J. Boente, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia; and John S. Adams, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Norfolk Office, made the announcement after Harper’s sentencing by U.S. District Judge Robert G. Doumar.

Harper pled guilty on October 27, 2014. According to court documents, Harper committed these crimes while residing at a halfway house in Newport News. On April 11, 2014, Harper signed out of the halfway house and proceeded to the BB&T Bank. He entered, handed the bank teller a demand note, and the bank teller complied and gave Harper $3,334 in cash. As the defendant fled from the bank, he left the demand note behind, which was written on the back of a counterfeit check that the defendant had tried to pass at a Money Mart Store a week earlier. The front of the check had been blacked out to obscure information pertaining to Prudential, CitiBank, the date, and references to the defendant and his address at the halfway house, as well as the ink fingerprint left by Harper. Harper was ultimately connected to the robbery based on documents from the halfway house and forensic analysis on the evidence found at and near the crime scene. Harper was previously convicted of two other robberies in Florida.

This case was investigated by the FBI, Newport News Police Department, and the Virginia Department of Forensic Science. Assistant U.S. Attorney Brian J. Samuels and Trial Attorney Jennifer R. Sykes, of the Department of Justice’s Organized Crime and Gang Section, prosecuted the case on behalf of the United States.

A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia. Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia or on PACER by searching for Case No. 4:14-cr-45.

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