DENVER (LAWFUEL) – Sammy Edward French, Jr., age 56, formerly of Colorado Springs, was sentenced yesterday by Chief U.S. District Court Judge Wiley Y. Daniel to serve 360 months (30 years) in federal prison for bank robbery. Chief Judge Daniel also ordered French to pay restitution to the banks he robbed totaling over $17,000. French was remanded into custody and ordered to start serving his sentence immediately.
Sammy Edward French, Jr. was indicted by a federal grand jury in Denver on September 13, 2006. He was found guilty following a five day jury trial on August 15, 2008. The jury deliberated for less than 90 minutes before returning unanimous guilty verdicts. French was sentenced on November 20, 2008.
According to the indictment, as well as the facts presented to the jury during trial, French committed three armed bank robberies and four other bank robberies. On January 9, 2006, French used a handgun to rob the World Savings Bank, located at 1905 South Wadsworth Boulevard, in Lakewood, Colorado. On May 1, 2006, French robbed the World Savings Bank, located at 10103 West Belleview Avenue, in Littleton, Colorado.
On May 10, 2006, French robbed the World Savings Bank, located at 1930 South Nevada Avenue, in Colorado Springs, Colorado. On May 26, 2006, French again robbed the World Savings Bank, located at 1905 South Wadsworth Boulevard, in Lakewood, Colorado. On June 6, 2006, French robbed a Key Bank, located at 5725 North Academy Boulevard, in Colorado Springs, Colorado. On June 29, 2006, French used a handgun to rob the Key Bank, located at 3605 Hartsel Drive, in Colorado Springs, Colorado. On July 3, 2006, French used a handgun to rob Canon National Bank, located at 3204 Colorado Avenue, in Colorado Springs, Colorado.
At the end of French’s crime spree, he robbed a woman of her car by showing her a gun. He was caught after an extensive man hunt by the Colorado Springs Police Department.
The 2006 indictment was not the first time French was charged with bank robbery. He was indicted by a federal grand jury in Denver in 1995. He was sentenced to serve 100 months (just over 8 years) in federal prison, and ordered to pay restitution totaling $6,447 to victim banks.
“Rob banks, do time,” said United States Attorney Troy Eid.
“Robbing banks will land you in prison,” said FBI Special Agent in Charge James Davis. “Anyone who thinks they will get away with committing a robbery should think again and take note of the sentence Mr. French has received.”
This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Southern Colorado Safe Streets Gang Task Force in Colorado Springs, the FBI Rocky Mountain Safe Streets Task Force in Denver, the Colorado Springs Police Department, the Pueblo Police Department, the Pueblo County Sheriff’s Office, and the Arvada Police Department.
The trial was handled by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Judith Smith and Greg Holloway.