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ROCHESTER, N.Y. — U.S. Attorney James P. Kennedy, Jr. announced today that a federal grand jury returned an indictment charging Eric Fountain, 32, of Rochester, NY, with bank robbery, entering a bank with intent to commit a larceny, and bank larceny. The charges carry a maximum penalty of 30 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. 

Assistant U.S. Attorney Katelyn M. Hartford, who is handling the case, stated that according to the indictment and a previously filed complaint, on March 3, 2016, at approximately 2:30 p.m., the entered the Chase Bank on East Ridge Road in Rochester, wearing a black or dark-colored hooded sweatshirt with the hood up, a black baseball hat, blue jeans, tan boots, dark-colored gloves, and a black mask covering his nose and mouth. He approached a teller station and stated, “I want it all in the bag, no GPS, no (inaudible).” The defendant then placed a white plastic bag on the counter. The teller proceeded to place cash from the teller drawer into the bag, at which point defendant took the bag and fled the bank on foot.

An off-duty Rochester Police Department Investigator, who happened to be conducting personal business at the Chase Bank, told investigators that he was sitting in a cubicle in the bank when he heard a muffled voice demanding money from a teller. The RPD Investigator did not intercede because he didn’t know if Fountain was armed. At that time, he told a bank employee to call 911 as he believed the bank was being robbed. After the defendant left the bank, the RPD Investigator chased Fountain through the parking lot of the bank. The chase continued to a fence which the defendant climbed over. The RPD Investigator saw the driver’s side door of a black Ford Mustang close, and the vehicle quickly drove off spinning its tires and driving recklessly. At that time, the RPD Investigator observed the New York license plate of the vehicle. A records check determined that the vehicle was registered to Fountain’s brother. A short time later, investigators located the vehicle in a pharmacy parking lot but not the defendant. Images of Fountain were released to local media outlets in an effort to obtain information. Later that evening, a tip was received identifying the defendant as the individual who robbed the Chase Bank.

On March 7, 2016, a search warrant was executed on the Ford Mustang. Inside, investigators found a black hooded sweatshirt, a black jacket with a zipper on the left side of the chest, a black baseball hat, and a white dust mask with black electrical tape covering the outside, which were consistent with the clothing and mask worn by Fountain during the bank robbery on March 3, 2016. Several rounds of ammunition, both in the trunk of the car and in the passenger compartment, were also found in the vehicle. Subsequent DNA testing on the items recovered from the vehicle matched the defendant’s DNA.

Fountain is currently on federal probation for a drug and gun conviction.

The indictment is the result of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Buffalo Office, under the direction of Special Agent-in-Charge Stephen Belongia.

The fact that a defendant has been charged with a crime is merely an accusation and the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.

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