3 charged with robbing courier of $436K outside Swansea bank

3 charged with robbing courier of $436K outside Swansea bank


SWANSEA, Mass. (WPRI) — Three Massachusetts men were arrested Wednesday in connection with an armed robbery outside a Swansea bank.

ORIGINAL NOTE: https://www.wpri.com/news/local-news/se-mass/3-charged-in-armed-robbery-of-courier-outside-swansea-bank/

Federal court documents obtained by 12 News show Steven Madison, Christopher White and Quentin McDonald were taken into custody after investigators executed search warrants at each of their homes.

The Robbery

Prosecutors allege Madison and White committed the robbery, while McDonald acted as the getaway driver.

A courier was zip-tied, pepper-sprayed and robbed of more than $436,000 in cash at the BayCoast Bank on Swansea Mall Drive on the afternoon of Feb. 19, according to police. Since the bank was closed for Presidents’ Day, the courier was trying to use the drop-box outside when he was approached by the masked suspects.

Police said one of the suspects restrained the victim at gunpoint, while the other loaded the bags of cash into a U-Haul van. The courier, who was also armed, managed to free one of his hands and fired three shots at the suspects as they drove off with the money.

Screenshot of surveillance video from Swansea BayCoast Bank robbery
Screenshot of surveillance video from Swansea BayCoast Bank robbery
Screenshot of surveillance video from Swansea BayCoast Bank robbery
Screenshot of surveillance video from Swansea BayCoast Bank robbery

In addition to the robbery itself, investigators said surveillance video from the bank showed the suspects doing a practice run less than two hours prior. They were then seen parking in view of the drop-box and waiting for the courier to arrive.

The courier was dropping off cash deposits that he had just collected from several cannabis dispensaries in the area, according to police.

The U-Haul van used by the suspects was found torched on Reed Street a short time after the robbery. Police later learned it was stolen the night before from the U-Haul location in Abington, Mass.

Burned-out U-Haul van on Reed Street in Swansea
Torched U-Haul van on Reed Street in Swansea

Witnesses on Reed Street told police they saw the suspects emptying the van and leaving in a Jeep before the van was engulfed in flames.

The Investigation

Court documents say investigators were able to identify the suspects by reviewing the surveillance footage and tracking cellular data based on the locations involved.

Police learned the Jeep was registered to McDonald’s sister, who lives with him in Brockton. Investigators found more than $6,000 in cash there on Wednesday, along with one of the phones believed to be associated with the robbery.

At Madison’s home in Bridgewater, court documents show police found more than $5,000 in cash, a $47,000 Rolex bought the day after the robbery, and one of the phones associated with the robbery, as well as a bag of cocaine and a loaded gun.

White’s landlord told police he owed $14,200 in rent. He reportedly repaid $5,700 in cash hours after the robbery, police said, then another $8,500 in cash the following week. When police searched his Raynham home, they found a phone associated with the robbery, along with cable ties, masks, a bag of cocaine and a loaded gun.

All three suspects are charged with affecting commerce by robbery, maliciously damaging or destroying a vehicle, and conspiracy. Madison and White are also charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition.

They were held pending a hearing scheduled for May 13.

The suspects each have criminal histories, according to court documents.

Madison, 38, was previously convicted of charges including armed home invasion and masked armed robbery. He was sentenced to 8 years in prison in Jan. 2014.

McDonald, 35, was his co-defendant and also convicted, court documents say.

White, 37, previously served time for receiving stolen property and larceny.

Police arrested a different suspect the day of the robbery, but he was cleared of all charges after investigators confirmed he was not involved.