Alleged Bank Robber Indicted At Federal Court Level

Alleged Bank Robber Indicted At Federal Court Level
Alleged Bank Robber

BERLIN — A Berlin man arrested in March after allegedly robbing an Ocean Pines bank at gunpoint before taking an employee’s vehicle and fleeing the scene was formally indicted in U.S. District Court last week by a federal grand jury.

A federal grand jury last Friday indicted Jeffrey V. Hare, 53, on charges of armed bank robbery, carjacking and brandishing a firearm during a crime of violence. Hare was arrested on March 13 after an hours-long manhunt in the Ocean Pines area after robbing the BB&T Bank at gunpoint earlier in the day. He was charged initially in Worcester County Circuit Court, but his trial now moves to U.S. District Court after his indictment last week.

Around 1:15 p.m. on March 13, Hare entered the BB&T Bank branch on Route 589 in Ocean Pines wearing a ski mask and brandishing a handgun. Hare allegedly told the bank tellers in the lobby that he had a gun and was robbing the bank. Hare demanded the tellers give him only $50 and $100 bills and that they didn’t give him any dye packs.

Hare then moved through the bank lobby, pointing the gun at employees and demanding money. Hare also demanded each teller give him her purse and car keys, but each teller told Hare their keys and purses were not available. According to the federal indictment handed down last week, Hare stole roughly $2,850 in cash from the bank.

The indictment alleges after robbing the tellers in the lobby, Hare found an employee who had locked herself in a back room at the bank. Hare allegedly forced open the locked door, pointed the handgun at the employee and demanded her car keys and purse. The employee gave Hare her purse, which contained cash and personal items along with the keys to her vehicle, a 2007 Kia Spectra, which was parked in the bank parking lot.

Hare exited the bank and fled in the stolen Kia Spectra, which he later abandoned at a nearby shopping center.

Around 6:30 p.m., after local news media reported the bank robbery, authorities conducted a reverse 911 call to all residences within five miles of the bank. Shortly thereafter, the Worcester County Bureau of Investigations (WCBI) received a tip from a concerned citizen about a possible suspect. WCBI, along with the Worcester Criminal Enforcement Team, the MSP, the FBI and the Worcester County Sheriff’s Office, converged on two houses in Ocean Pines in an attempt to locate the suspect, who had been identified as Hare.

Hare was located and questioned about his whereabouts earlier in the day. Based on that interview, a search warrant was obtained for him, his residence and his vehicle. WCBI detectives located evidence supporting probable cause connecting him to the BB&T Bank earlier in the day. In addition, an eyewitness identified Hare as a suspect seen near the bank on Friday afternoon.

Hare was arrested and charged with armed robbery, robbery, felony theft, use of a firearm in the commission of a felony, first-degree assault, theft of a motor vehicle, reckless endangerment, and malicious destruction of property over $500.

Hare now faces a maximum sentence of 25 years for armed bank robbery, a maximum of 15 years for carjacking, and a mandatory minimum of seven years and up to life in prison for brandishing a firearm during a crime of violence. An initial appearance in U.S. District Court in Baltimore has not been scheduled.