Florida man arrested by Milford cops pleads guilty to robbery

Robert Abel, 55, of St. Augustine, Fla., pleaded guilty this week in Hartford federal court to one count of bank robbery and also admitted to two armed robberies in Florida and a carjacking in South Carolina, according to John H. Durham, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut.

Abel has been detained since his arrest by the Milford Police Department on Feb. 17.

According to court documents and statements made in court, on Feb. 11, Abel, brandishing a long silver blade, robbed a McDonald’s restaurant in East Palm Coast, Fla. On Feb. 12, brandishing a long knife, he robbed a CVS in St. Augustine, Fla. Officials said he stole a total of approximately $733 during these two robberies.

On Feb. 15, Abel stole a car from a woman in South Carolina, ordering the victim not to move or he would shoot her. Two days later he stole $1,517 during a robbery of a Webster Bank branch in Stratford, authorities said. He then tried to rob a Walgreens Pharmacy in Stratford, but left the store without any money.

Abel is scheduled to be sentenced by U.S. District Judge Vanessa L. Bryant on Jan. 31, at which time he faces a maximum term of imprisonment of 20 years.

The matter has been investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Stratford Police Department and Milford Police Department, with the assistance of the Summerville, S.C. Police Department, St. Augustine Police Department and the Flagler County, Fla., Sheriff’s Office. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Douglas P. Morabito.