An Alabama man who robbed First Bank on East Hill Street in Thomson in February 2004 was sentenced last week in federal court in Augusta.
McDuffie County Sheriff's Investigator Larry Adaway said 33-year-old Robert Jeffery Martin of Ozark, Ala., entered a guilty plea in federal court in March 2005 but sentencing was deferred. He was sentenced Wednesday, June 22, to 134 months and eight days in prison.
Mr. Martin was arrested March 1, 2004, in Jackson, Tenn., after the stolen vehicle he was driving went through a red light at an intersection striking another vehicle and seriously injuring three teenagers. According to reports at the time of the incident, evidence was found that implicated Mr. Martin in the Thomson bank robbery. During the robbery, a teller was handed a note demanding money. An undisclosed amount of money was taken and the offender did not show a weapon during the robbery.
Mr. Martin also faced charges of attempted escape and obstruction involving an incident at the McDuffie County Law Enforcement Center April 27. Inv. Adaway said jailers discovered that Martin had pried off a metal towel bar in his cell and used the towel bar to attempt to pry open a window. Inv. Adaway said the inmate used wet toilet tissue to cover the scrape marks and hung clothes over the window to cover the escape attempt. The minimum sentence the defendant could have received is 95 months in jail. However Inv. Adaway said the judge sentenced him to a longer prison sentence after hearing about the escape attempt.