Deal struck for alleged bank robber

Attorneys have reached a plea agreement for a Las Vegas man accused of robbing two Grand Junction-area banks over the span of three months last year.

Douglas Edward James, 25, is expected to enter into an agreement during a plea hearing scheduled Friday in Denver before U.S. District Court Judge Philip Brimmer, according to recent court filings.

La Fonda Jones, James’ federal public defender, has filed a notice of disposition and a request to change her client’s plea.

The terms of James’ deal with prosecutors are not specified in the new filings.

James in November pleaded not guilty on two counts of bank robbery and one count of brandishing a firearm during a crime of violence, related to robberies July 17 at Wells Fargo, 2251 Broadway, and on Oct. 21 at First National Bank of the Rockies, 2775 Acrin Ave.

James was allegedly implicated in a third robbery at a bank in Las Vegas on Aug. 18, when he allegedly showed a teller a handgun and fled a bank with a bag of money, according to an arrest affidavit.

The teller managed to slip an electronic tracking device into the bag, which Las Vegas authorities later recovered inside a 1999 Pontiac Grand Prix registered to James.

Among a host of items recovered in the car were a black semi-automatic handgun and a replica Denver Broncos’ Jake Plummer jersey.

Witnesses told investigators that the robber of the Redlands Wells Fargo on July 17 was wearing a similar jersey and used a similar handgun, the affidavit said.

A teller there identified James in a photo line-up as the man who robbed the branch.

James allegedly fled with more than $14,000 in cash that day, threatening to shoot a teller in the process, the affidavit said.

Investigators learned that James on July 18 put down a $3,000 cash deposit, mostly with $20 and $100 bills, at a Grand Junction car dealership to buy the Grand Prix that was linked to the Las Vegas robbery.

James has been held in federal custody without bond since his arrest in Las Vegas in October.


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