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Wayne County bank robber goes to federal prison

Posted March 27, 2011

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— A Wayne County man convicted of robbing a bank at gunpoint last summer will spend 16 years in federal prison, U.S. Attorney George B. Holding announced Saturday.

Clifton Earl Johnson, 59, of Pikeville, pleaded guilty to armed bank robbery and using or carrying a firearm during and in relation to a crime of violence in connection with the June 9, 2010, robbery of the Heritage Bank in Fremont.

His imprisonment will be followed by five years of supervised release. He was also ordered to pay a $10,000 fine.

Prosecutors said that Johnson pointed a gun at the bank manager's head and said, "Fill this bag with $100s and $50s." He ordered a customer to lay on the floor and all the employees to get into the bank vault, where one of them filled his bag with cash, prosecutors said.

He then ordered to employees to lay on the floor and fled, and a worker activated the alarm.

Fremont Police Chief Ronald Rawlings confronted Johnson as he was fleeing.

Prosecutors said Johnson pointed his gun at the police chief, who fired four times without hitting the suspect. Johnson then surrendered.


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