Thursday, July 12, 2012
Bank robbers sentenced
By SUE WATSON
A mother and daughter were recently sentenced in federal court for their involvement in a pair of Marshall County bank robberies.
Angela Bryson Miller, 46, and Starlet Runyan Kizer, 24, both of the 7000 block of Birdwood Drive, Memphis, Tenn., were sent to prison for roles in the robberies of the Bank of Holly Springs, Slayden Branch, on May 16, 2010, and the Barton Branch of Citizens Bank June 10, 2010. The duo was sentenced by U.S. District judge Sharion Aycock in Aberdeen.
Bryson was sentenced to 384 months and Kizer 385 months, according to Marshall County Sheriff Kenny Dickerson.
The two were convicted by a federal jury in August 2011 in court at Aberdeen.
Miller was found guilty on two counts – using firearms in each of the robberies. Kizer was found guilty on those two charges, plus one count of robbery by deadly force in the Citizens Bank heist.
Three male co-defendants from the Memphis area plead guilty in 2011 and testified against the women. William Albright and Marcus Westbrook were sentenced to 120 months, and Brian Gilliland was sentenced to 240 months for their roles in the robberies, the sheriff said.
Dickerson thanked Maj. Kelly McMillen with his office and agents with the Southaven office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation for help in the investigation and in prosecuting the robbery cases.
Pawn shop case
A case of armed robbery and kidnapping that languished for nearly a year was recently solved and three of the four suspects received sentences.
Dickerson said two masked men with guns entered the residence of Eddie Archer June 11, 2007, and held Eddie Archer and his son and nephew for a period of time. Archer was forced at gunpoint to open his pawn shop in Watson, while a second suspect held the children hostage inside his residence.
Archer was forced to open his safe. The suspect took some money and then as the two were returning to the residence, Archer made a run for it. The two robbery suspects fled in a pickup along Highway 309 North.
The case languished until the sheriff’s office received information from an anonymous caller on April 2, 2008, of possible suspects, Dickerson said.
That information was turned over to the Safe Streets Task Force, the U.S. Marshals, FBI agents and homicide investigations at the Memphis Police Department, the sheriff said.
A meeting with McMillen and these agents led to the identification of individuals suspected in the Eddie Archer robbery and in other robberies in Memphis, Dickerson said.
He said four suspects were arrested – Michael Thompson, 53, Morris P. Akins, 55, Samuel Lee Dickerson, 56, and Terrance Vaughn, 42, all of the Memphis area.
All four were indicted by a grand jury in Marshall County on one count armed robbery and three counts kidnapping, the sheriff said. Later, the four suspects were indicted by a federal grand jury in Tennessee for robberies that occurred in Memphis, he said.
On May 2, 2012, Morris P. Akins and Michael Thompson were sentenced in federal court in Memphis to 350 months, Sheriff Dickerson said.
Samuel Dickerson pled guilty to charges in Marshall County and was sentenced by a circuit court judge for his role in the Eddie Archer Pawn Shop robbery. Samuel Dickerson was released on probation by the judge.
Terrance Vaughn was murdered in Memphis before trial during an apparent robbery attempt, the sheriff said.
“We thank the federal prosecutors in Memphis, Tenn., the Safe Streets Task Force and U.S. Marshals for all their help in the investigation, the capture of the suspects and the prosecution of the suspects in this case,” Sheriff Dickerson said. “They spent long and arduous hours and days in this investigation.”
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