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Bank robber pleads no contest, sentenced to 364 days in jail

By Staff | Apr 2, 2011

A North Fort Myers man who robbed a bank in Cape Coral on New Year’s Eve Day was recently sentenced to less than one year in the county jail.
Lawrence Charles Derby, 42, of 1117 Laurel Drive, pleaded no contest to robbery without a firearm or weapon on March 16. In a plea agreement with the state, he received 364 days in jail, with 73 days credit for time served.
He was adjudicated guilty, according to Samantha Syoen, spokeswoman for the State Attorney’s Office. Upon his release, Derby must serve two years of community control, followed by two years of drug offender probation.
The Department of Corrections will supervise him the last two years.
Derby also had to submit a DNA sample and must pay $4,385 in restitution and $400 in court costs. He cannot return to the location of the offense.
Public defender Regine Emile represented Derby.
She did not return a telephone message seeking comment Friday.
Assistant State Attorney Sara Anne Miller prosecuted the case.
“We felt this was an appropriate resolution,” Syoen said. “The defendant had a DUI on his record, no other criminal history.”
On Dec. 31, the Cape police responded to a robbery at the BB&T Bank, at 2223 Del Prado Blvd. S. A man reportedly had entered the bank, handed the teller a note demanding cash and indicated that he had a weapon. After the man was given an undisclosed amount of cash, he fled from the bank.
Witnesses reported seeing a man get into a gold Ford Expedition.
Officers later located an abandoned gold Expedition not far from the scene, according to officials. Based on the evidence collected, detectives developed probable cause for the arrest of Derby in connection to the bank robbery.
On Jan. 3, the U.S. Marshal’s Fugitive Task Force reportedly received an anonymous tip that Derby was at a Motel 6 located near the intersection of Hancock Bridge Parkway and U.S. 41.
Authorities arrived and found Derby sitting on the sidewalk outside of the motel.