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D.C man who robbed Alexandria bank killed in La. prison

A District man convicted of armed bank robberies committed in Virginia in 2007 was stabbed to death Monday night by another inmate in the maximum security portion of the federal prison in Pollock, La., prison officials said.

The death of Carlton Rama Coltrane, 25, of Morris Road in Southeast, is being investigated by the FBI, said Pollock prison spokesman Ron Martinez, who said he could provide few details of the stabbing.

Prison officials also provided few details to Coltrane’s mother, Mary, who told The Post she was called by the prison chaplain Monday at about 10:30 p.m.

She said she last spoke with her son Thursday and that, since his transfer to the maximum security facility in Louisiana in August, he had told her there were running disputes between gangs of inmates from Louisiana and the D.C. area. He did not mention any specific trouble on Thursday, she said.

“He had said there were ongoing arguments,” she said.

He had been in a minimum security facility in Fairton, N. J., previously but was transferred, his mother said, after an altercation with a guard. Coltrane was her youngest child. He has two surviving sisters.

The Pollock spokesman said Coltrane was declared dead at a hospital off the prison grounds. He could not say whether Coltrane and other inmates had been involved in previous disputes, nor could he say where in the prison the stabbing occurred, or offer details about the “homemade” weapon used in the attack.

The prison at Pollock was locked down twice in December following non-fatal attacks by inmates on each other, Martinez said. The official prison web site states that the facility “is in urgent need of correctional officers to fill vacant positions.” Inmates in the maximum security area were confined to their cells and not allowed visitors Tuesday.

The prison is surrounded by the Kisatchie National Forest in southeastern Grant Parish, La., approximately 15 miles north of Alexandria, La.

Coltrane was convicted in U.S. District Court in Alexandria in July 2008 on one count each of armed bank robbery, using a firearm during a crime of violence and conspiracy. He was acquitted on a second armed bank robbery count and a second firearm count.

Court records said Coltrane and a male co-conspirator robbed two banks in Alexandria during 2007, making off with a total of $41,633.

During the Feb. 17, 2007 robbery of a Bank of America branch on Richmond Highway, the court records show, the other robber jumped over the teller counter with a black shotgun while Coltrane stayed in the lobby, holding a plastic bag. The other man took money from the tellers’ drawers and emptied it into the bag Coltrane was holding, the records show. The other man then put a shotgun to a teller’s head and forced into another room to obtain additional money, the files show.

Coltrane was convicted after a three-day jury trial. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit upheld his conviction in July. He was scheduled to be released in 2018, according to the Federal Bureau of Prisons web site.

The U.S. attorney’s office had no comment on Monday’s stabbing.

This post has been updated since it was first published.

-- Mary Pat Flaherty and Jerry Markon

By Washington Post Editors  |  January 19, 2010; 3:01 PM ET
Categories:  Alexandria , Around the Nation , Jerry Markon , Mary Pat Flaherty , The District  
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In light of this good news, more DC convicted thugs need to be promptly shipped to LA prisons.

Posted by: jabreal00 | January 19, 2010 3:39 PM | Report abuse

"He had been in a minimum security facility in Fairton, N. J., previously but was transferred, his mother said, after an altercation with a guard." Ordinarily, I'd only wish this on murderers, rapists and child molesters. But it sounds like if he'd behaved himself, even in prison, he'd be alive today. Goes to show, if you don't want to get shanked, do what you have to do to stay away from them with the shanks.

Posted by: gbooksdc | January 19, 2010 6:26 PM | Report abuse

If he had a "do-over," I'll bet he'd wish he hadn't had an "altercation with a guard" in N.J.

Posted by: waterfrontproperty | January 19, 2010 7:04 PM | Report abuse

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