Home Dallas Press Releases 2010 Scarecrow Bandit Leader Sentenced to 355 Years in Federal Prison on Bank Robbery and Firearms Convictions
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Scarecrow Bandit Leader Sentenced to 355 Years in Federal Prison on Bank Robbery and Firearms Convictions

U.S. Attorney’s Office May 05, 2010
  • Northern District of Texas (214) 659-8600

DALLAS—The last sentencing in the “Scarecrow Bandit” case was held today when U.S. District Judge Jane J. Boyle sentenced one of the group’s leaders, Tony R. Hewitt, 43, a.k.a. “Priceless T,” to serve 355 years in federal prison, announced U.S. Attorney James T. Jacks of the Northern District of Texas. The Scarecrow Bandits committed a series of violent “takeover” style bank robberies in the Dallas area between January and June 2008.

The group’s other leader, Corey Deyon Duffey, a.k.a. “Kenyo,” a.k.a. “Calvin Brown,” 29, was sentenced in January 2010 to 354 years in prison. Charles Runnels, a.k.a. “Junior,” 43, was sentenced last month, to 29 life sentences, to be served consecutively, without parole. Jarvis Dupree Ross, a.k.a. “Dookie,” a.k.a. “Dapree Dollars, a.k.a. “Fifty,” 30, was sentenced in February 2010 to 330 years in prison. Antonyo Reece, a.k.a. “Seven,” 32, was also sentenced in February to 140 years in prison.

Hewitt, Duffey, Runnels, Ross and Reece were convicted at trial in August 2009. All were convicted on all but two counts of the superseding indictment that charged multiple counts of conspiracy to commit bank robbery; bank robbery; attempted bank robbery; and using firearms in relation to crimes of violence. Ross was also convicted on one count of kidnapping. Duffey, Hewitt, and Runnels were each convicted on one count of being a felon in possession of a firearm, while Ross was convicted on two counts of being a felon in possession of a firearm.

The other two defendants charged in the case, Darobie Kentay Stenline, a.k.a. “Fish,” a.k.a.“Dude White,” 31, and Yolanda McDow, a.k.a. “Yo,” 43, each pleaded guilty the week prior to trial to various conspiracy to commit bank robbery, bank robbery and firearms charges. McDow pleaded guilty to the five robberies in which she participated as a “lookout” for the group. Following their arrests, both Stenline and McDow cooperated in the investigation and testified for the prosecution at the trial of their five co-defendants. McDow was sentenced to 190 months (nearly 16 years) and Stenline was sentenced to 10 years in prison.

The defendants were known as the Scarecrow Bandits by the FBI because they wore loose, sometimes plaid, shirts and floppy hats during the first several of the 21 robberies they are believed to have committed. During later robberies, however, their outfits changed to mostly black gear and they wore masks, gloves and body armor. At trial, the government presented evidence that the defendants conspired together to commit, committed, or attempted to commit, several armed bank robberies, as listed below:

  • June 2, 2008 Regions Bank
    2245 West Campbell Road, Garland, Texas
  • May 2008 Bank of America
    1431 Spring Valley Road, Richardson, Texas
  • May 2008 Bank of America
    534 Centennial Road, Richardson, Texas
  • May 16, 2008 Bank of America
    4751 South Hulen Road, Fort Worth, Texas
  • April 24, 2008 Bank of America
    7300 North MacArthur Blvd., Irving, Texas
  • March 28, 2008 State Bank of Texas
    517 West Interstate 30, Garland, Texas
  • March 28, 2008 Century Bank
    3015 Frankford Road, Dallas, Texas
  • February 1, 2008 Comerica Bank
    1483 North Hampton Road, Desoto, Texas
  • January 28, 2008 Citibank
    2720 Beltline Road, Garland, Texas

According to evidence presented at trial, each robbery was well-organized and researched, executed with precision and discipline, and involved aggressive use of firearms (including assault rifles) and tasers by the defendants. The defendants routinely terrorized bank employees by pointing handguns within inches of their faces and threatening violence if their orders were not obeyed. In fact, in one robbery, a taser was discharged on a bank employee. They communicated using cell phones and walkie-talkies and generally spent less than two to three minutes inside each bank. Additionally, they always used stolen cars for their getaways.

The defendants were arrested in June 2008, after a foiled bank robbery in Garland, Texas. When law enforcement attempted to arrest Hewitt, who along with Duffey were the group’s leaders, he used his vehicle to lead them on a high-speed pursuit, attempting to avoid apprehension by entering a Costco store in Plano, Texas, where he was arrested after law enforcement was compelled to evacuate the store. The same day, when law enforcement attempted to arrest Ross, who was in the same vehicle as Duffey, Duffey dropped Ross off at an apartment complex where he broke into an apartment and kidnaped an innocent victim at gunpoint, in hopes of thwarting apprehension. When law enforcement attempted to arrest Runnels and Reece, not only did they attempt to flee from law enforcement, but Runnels used his vehicle to ram the vehicles of the pursuing law enforcement officers.

U.S. Attorney Jacks praised the excellent investigative efforts of the Dallas, Richardson, Garland, DeSoto, Irving and Plano Police Departments and the FBI. The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Gary Tromblay, John Kull and Jay DeWald.

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