Snowboard Bandit Sentenced to Federal Prison for Bank Robberies

DENVER (LAWFUEL) – Michael Jason Martinez, age 39, of Wheat Ridge, Colorado, was sentenced last week by U.S. District Court Judge Robert E. Blackburn to serve 120 months (10 years) in federal prison for bank robbery, Acting U.S. Attorney David Gaouette and FBI Special Agent in Charge James Davis announced. The defendant was also ordered to pay restitution totaling $18,795. Martinez was one of the men known by the name “Snowboard Bandits,” after he and another man robbed banks wearing ski-type clothing. Martinez, who appeared in custody, was remanded.

Michael Jason Martinez was charged by Criminal Complaint on January 24, 2008. He pled guilty before Judge Blackburn on June 5, 2008. He was sentenced on April 1, 2009.

According to the stipulated facts contained in the plea agreement, on January 23, 2008, at approximately 6:30 p.m., Martinez entered the TCF Bank located at 6428 Gardenia Street in Arvada. He announced the robbery, and demanded to be let into the teller area. The defendant removed money from teller drawers, placing the cash into a soft sided black briefcase. He then fled on foot. A few minutes after the robbery, an Arvada Police officer conducted a traffic stop of a vehicle matching the description of a car seen leaving the scene of the bank robbery. Upon approaching the car the officer observed red dye consistent with dye stains from a bank dye pack. Martinez, who was in the passenger seat of the car, was arrested.

On November 28, 2007, Martinez and another man entered the TCF Bank, located in Westminster. The men were wearing distinctive snow-type outer wear to include camouflage jackets and white ski jackets with a large emblem under one arm. Martinez vaulted the teller counter, and yelled at the tellers, telling them to get on the floor. He then removed cash from two teller drawers. The two men then fled the bank together.

On December 3, 2007, Martinez and another man entered the TCF Bank, located in Broomfield. Both were wearing the distinctive snow outer wear. Martinez again jumped over the teller counter. He shouted at the employees to get down. The defendant took money from two teller drawers. The two then fled the bank.

On December 21, 2007, the two men entered the TCF Bank, located in Colorado Springs. Martinez again jumped the counter. He removed money from two drawers, and then the two fled the bank together.

Edgar Adrian Perez, age 27, of Northglenn, a co-defendant of Martinez, was charged in the January 23, 2008 bank robbery. He was sentenced by Judge Blackburn to serve 47 months (nearly 4 years) in federal prison for that robbery. The other man mentioned in the Martinez plea agreement has not been charged in federal court. He faces state car-jacking and robbery charges.

“Bank robbers should know that they will be caught and held accountable for their crime,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Dave Gaouette.

“The law enforcement cooperation in addressing crime in the Metro Denver area is exemplary,” said FBI Special Agent in Charge James Davis. “Criminals should take heed and think twice before committing a crime.”

This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the Rocky Mountain Safe Streets Task Force (RMSSTF), the Arvada Police Department, the Denver Police Department, the Arapahoe County Sheriff’s Office, the Aurora Police Department, the Broomfield Police Department, the Lakewood Police Department, the Littleton Police Department, the Wheat Ridge Police Department, the Colorado Springs Police Department, and the Westminster Police Department. FBI Special Agent in Charge Davis offered special thanks to the head of TCF Security.

This case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Judith Smith.

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