New Haven man sentenced to 7½ years for armed robberies of West Haven post office, Hamden bank


HARTFORD >> A 26-year-old New Haven man was sentenced to 7½ years in federal prison for robbing a post office in West Haven and bank in Hamden on the same day in April 2016.

In a press release, Deirdre M. Daly, U.S. attorney for Connecticut, announced that Malcolm Haynes, also known as “Black,” was sentenced to prison Wednesday by U.S. District Judge Alvin W. Thompson in Hartford, to be followed by five years of supervised release, for committing armed robberies of the Allingtown post office in West Haven and the Wells Fargo Bank in Hamden.

The release said that according to court documents and statements made in court, on the morning of April 21, 2016, Haynes, Derrick White, Howard Bookert and another male drove in White’s vehicle to the vicinity of the Allingtown post office, at 75 Farwell Ave., West Haven. Haynes, who was armed with a .22-caliber rifle, White and Bookert entered the post office and pointed the rifle at people in the lobby and the clerk behind the counter and directed them to stay away from the door, the release said. White then hopped over the counter, waved the postal clerk away from her station, removed the cash drawer from the counter and handed it to Bookert. The robbers then fled with the drawer, which contained approximately $491, according to the release.

Later that afternoon, the four individuals drove to a branch of Wells Fargo Bank at 1647 Whitney Ave., Hamden, federal prosecutors said. Haynes, again armed with the rifle, White and the other male entered the bank. Haynes pointed the rifle in the direction of various employees as White went behind the counter and removed approximately $9,287 from teller drawers. During the robbery, the other male brandished what appeared to be a small, black, semiautomatic pistol, officials stated.

White and Bookert were apprehended in New Haven the same day. According to the release, investigators also recovered the firearm Haynes used during the robberies, which Haynes had hidden in a plastic garbage bag behind a house in New Haven. Haynes was arrested May 23, 2016. The three defendants have been detained since their arrests.

Haynes pleaded guilty Feb. 2 to one count of armed robbery of a postal employee and one count of armed bank robbery.

White and Bookert, both of Hamden, previously pleaded guilty and await sentencing, the release said. The fourth male was charged by the state.

The robberies were investigated by the West Haven Police Department, Hamden Police Department, New Haven Police Department, Federal Bureau of Investigation and U.S. Postal Inspection Service. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Anastasia E. King, the release said.