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Chesapeake Bandits

Member of ‘Chesapeake Bandits’ group receives fate after brazen robbery of armored truck that netted more than $165K in cash

James Russell Davis, right, pleaded guilty to his role of an armed robbery of an armored truck driver who was depositing cash into an ATM in Los Angeles. He and his co-conspirators, left and center, took part in at least 4 robberies. (FBI)

The getaway driver of the so-called “Chesapeake Bandits” bank robbers was sentenced to nearly 14 years in prison after admitting to taking part in violent and organized robberies of armored truck drivers in Los Angeles, according to the US Attorney’s Office.

James Russell Davis, 35, pleaded guilty in February to one count each of interference with commerce by robbery (Hobbs Act) and discharging a firearm in furtherance of a crime of violence. United States District Judge Fernando L. Aenlle-Rocha on Friday sentenced Davis to 166 months in federal prison, which comes out to just under 14 years, and ordered him to pay over $165,000 in restitution.

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    The robbery in question occurred on Feb. 14, 2022, at the Westcom Credit Union, located at 2871 W. 120th St. in the city of Hawthorne, California. Davis and his co-conspirators had tracked the armored truck driver’s movements three weeks prior, a criminal complaint says. On the day of the robbery, Davis acted as the getaway driver and the lookout. After driving up to the bank, 38-year-old Deneyvous Jayan Hobson and another man armed with semi-automatic rifles ran out of the car and ambushed the armored truck driver who was putting money into the ATM.

    One of the men forced the driver to the ground at gunpoint, pressed the rifle to his head and took his service pistol, prosecutors said. The suspects then took the bags of cash and customer checks within the machine. They got away with about $165,000, according to prosecutors. A suspect also fired their rifle, but it did not hit anyone.

    “Imagine the terror of being pulled to the ground with a gun pointed at your head. Davis and his accomplices violently ambushed an individual just doing his job so they could make off with other people’s money,” Krysti Hawkins, Acting Assistant Director in Charge of the FBI’s Los Angeles Field Office, said in a statement. “This significant sentence cannot undo the emotional and psychological damage inflicted on the victim, but we hope it sends a clear message that we will continue to pursue the most violent and persistent offenders and hold them accountable for their blatant disregard for human life and the safety of our communities.”

    Then on June 9, 2022, the Chesapeake Bandits allegedly struck again less than a mile away from their first heist, although Davis’ plea only dealt with the first robbery. This time they robbed an armored car driver at the Bank of America branch, 11525 Crenshaw Boulevard in Inglewood, California, the affidavit said. They reportedly took off with more than $90,000. A vehicle matching Davis’ was seen in the area within 30 minutes of the robbery, prosecutors said.

    Hobson, Davis, and co. allegedly performed their biggest heist on Sept. 15, 2022, during the robbery of a Brinks armored truck driver at PLS Check Cashers at 2601 S. La Brea Ave. The suspects got away with a staggering $375,000, prosecutors say. Again, surveillance video captured Davis’ vehicle in the area at the time of the robbery. Their final robbery of an armored truck driver allegedly occurred on Jan. 9, 2023 at 99 Cents Only Store at 3060 South Crenshaw Boulevard in Los Angeles, California. It doesn’t say how much the bandits got away with in that robbery. In the three others, they allegedly stole more than $630,000, prosecutors said.

    In addition to the same MO and getaway car, FBI agents also noticed one of the robbers had a distinctive star tattoo while another wore the same shoes, the complaint said. Agents arrested Davis and Hobson in March 2023 and they’ve been in custody ever since. Hobson, the reported mastermind, is still awaiting trial. The nickname “Chesapeake Bandits” came from the fact that both Davis and Hobson lived at a home on Chesapeake Avenue.

    “When people commit crimes with guns, tragedies happen,” said United States Attorney Martin Estrada. “This is why it is so important that we bring the weight of federal prosecution against the perpetrators of violent gun crime.”

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    The post Member of ‘Chesapeake Bandits’ group receives fate after brazen robbery of armored truck that netted more than $165K in cash first appeared on Law & Crime.