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Maryland man sentenced for robbery, kidnapping

A Maryland man who participated in a plot to kidnap a St. Mary's County bank manager and her two young children, and force the woman to get cash from the bank was sentenced Tuesday to 19 years in prison.

Franklin Brown, Jr., 37, of St. Leonard, Md. was convicted of armed bank robbery as well as conspiracy and firearms charges in federal court in Greenbelt.

In the summer of 2008, Brown, and his accomplices hatched a plan to rob a PNC bank in California, Md., according to police and court papers. The group began by studying the daily routine of a manager at the bank, including the route she took to work.

On Sept. 24, 2008, Brown and another man, William C. Johnson, 38, kidnapped the bank manager and her son, then 18-months-old, and daughter, then 5-years-old, from their home at gunpoint, court papers say. The men drove the family to St. Mary’s County in the bank manager’s car, and Brown got out and rode with another accomplice.

Johnson then ordered the bank manager to drive to the PNC branch. The woman and her daughter were forced to go inside and remove $169,900, while the boy was held hostage in the car. The woman was able to leave her daughter in the bank.

Johnson, who was convicted of robbery and other charges and sentenced to more than 18 years in prison, forced the bank manager to drive to an elementary school where he released the woman and her son.

That night, Brown, Johnson and others went to New Jersey casinos and and spent tens of thousands gambling, authorities say. They later used some of the cash for a trip to Las Vegas. Police also found $84,000 buried in Brown's backyard.

-- Maria Glod

By Maria Glod  |  December 22, 2009; 1:04 PM ET
Categories:  From the Courthouse , Maria Glod , St. Mary's  
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