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Final Defendant Pleads Guilty in St. Mary's Bank Robbery

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Washington Post Staff Writer
Wednesday, May 13, 2009; 4:41 PM

The fourth and final defendant charged in an unusual kidnapping and bank robbery in St. Mary's County in September pleaded guilty in federal court today to armed bank robbery and other charges.

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Joseph Franklin Brown Jr., 35, of Great Mills could face life in prison at his sentencing Sept. 21, the U.S. attorney's office said. According to his plea agreement, Brown, a drug dealer, plotted with the others to kidnap a bank manager and her two young children, then force the woman to remove money from her bank, a PNC in California, Md.

The woman and her children were released unharmed. Brown and the others stole nearly $170,000, distributing some among themselves, burying some in Brown's back yard and gambling away some in New Jersey, the U.S. attorney's office said.

The others charged in connection with the scheme -- Quinita J. Ennis, William C. Johnson and Edwin J. Jones -- have already pleaded guilty and are expected to be sentenced in the coming months.

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