Man who wore ‘scream’ mask during bank robbery pleads guilty

Monroe man accused in Orange package theft
Monroe man accused in Orange package theft

A New Jersey man pleaded guilty Wednesday to a Killingworth bank robbery during which he wore a “scream mask” as he approached the teller, according to federal authorities.

Lavon Young, 39, of Union City, New Jersey, now faces up to 20 years in prison on the bank robbery charge, officials from the office of Connecticut U.S. attorney said in a release. Lavon’s plea was made before U.S. District Judge Victor A. Bolden in federal court in Bridgeport, the release said.

The robbery at the Killingworth bank was the second attempt made on Jan. 27 by young and David C. Earl, 26, also of Union City, according to the release.

According to court documents and statements made in court, at about noon on Jan. 27, Young and Earl first went to a Key Bank branch on East Main Street in Branford, planning to rob it bank. Both men were wearing dark upper-body clothing and Young also had on a dark, hooded sweatshirt and a green “Scream mask” over his face at they approached the bank, the release said.

The bank, however, was locked.

But within an hour and still in the same clothing and mask, Young and Earl drove to a TD Bank branch on Route 81 in Killingworth. “Young and Earl (who had a pellet gun with him) entered the TD Bank, told everyone to get down and demanded money from the tellers or else they would ‘blow their heads off,’” the release said. Earl possessed a pellet gun during the robbery. “A teller handed over multiple stacks of bills, totaling $9,754, and Young and Earl fled.”

“Young and Earl threw most of the money out of the windows of their car while driving from the bank, and while being pursued by law enforcement. They were eventually apprehended by East Haven Police. Investigators successfully recovered $9,479 of the $9,754 taken during the robbery.”

Earl pleaded guilty to one count of bank robbery on May 15. The date for sentencing has not been set.

The case was investigated by the FBI, Connecticut State Police, Branford Police Department and East Haven Police Department and is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Henry Kopel and Douglas Morabito, the release said.