3 Houston men face federal charges following St. George Wells Fargo ATM robbery in December

ST. GEORGE — Three of the five suspects arrested in connection with the ATM robbery in St. George in December 2023 made an initial appearance in federal court after the trio was indicted on federal bank robbery charges.

2023 file photo shows a suspect in an ATM robbery who is taken into custody by St. George Police officers in St. George, Utah, Dec. 18, 2023 | Photo by Mori Kessler, St. George News

Three Texas men — Aaron Taylor Adams, 28, Domnick Nicholas Snell, 20, and Jarvus Keith Lewis, 31, all of of Houston — were indicted in federal court facing one count each of bank robbery by force or violence, according to court records filed by Assistant U.S. Attorney Joseph Hood last week. Hood represents the government in all three cases.

The defendants made initial appearances in U.S. District Court in St. George on Monday.

The indictments were filed in connection with a bank robbery reported on Dec. 18 when officers responded to a Wells Fargo branch on South River Road where money was stolen from an ATM machine. In all, five suspects were arrested in connection with the incident, including Ronald Edward Charles, 27, and Justin Renard Leonard, 37, who still face multiple felony charges filed in 5th District Court.

During the December incident, a service technician repairing the ATM machine was approached by two males donning masks who yelled at the technician to get away from the machine. They reportedly physically pushed him out of the way and then removed four ATM cassettes that held approximately $5,000 in cash before. The suspects then jumped back into their vehicle and fled the scene.

A witness followed the suspect’s vehicle into the Bloomington Hills area where two passengers exited the car, while the driver sped off towards River Road. They allegedly threw the ATM cassettes out of the car window, and police later recovered them, according to charging documents filed at the time of the arrests.

Minutes later, the Chevrolet was stopped near the intersection of Brigham Road and River Road and arrested the driver, Adams, while patrol recovered a pillow case containing $5,000 in cash nearby. Shortly thereafter Snell and Lewis were located and taken into custody by police.

St. George Police officers patrol the parking lot next to Little Caesars pizza shop on Brigham Road following the arrest of a suspected ATM robber, St. George, Utah, Dec. 18, 2023 | Photo by Mori Kessler, St. George News

The fourth suspect, Charles, was located near the Brigham Road intersection by police, while Leonard was arrested on Convention Center Drive.

Officers determined that Adams, who has an extensive criminal history in Texas, committed the theft of more than $5,000 by driving the vehicle ,while the codefendants, using force, took the cassettes of cash from the service technician. All five suspects were working in concert to commit the crimes and hindered the case by throwing the cassettes out of the car window as they fled.

All five suspects were booked into Purgatory Correctional Facility facing first-degree felony robbery and second-degree felony theft. Each was also charged with one count each of obstruction of justice and property damage, while Adams was charged with possession of marijuana and reckless driving.

The charges filed in 5th District Court against Adams, Snell and Lewis will likely be dismissed as their cases move through the federal system, while the cases filed against Charles and Leonard will remain in state court.

Charles has a preliminary waiver hearing on March 20, while Leonard is scheduled for a waiver hearing on March 25. Until then, the suspects remain in custody in Washington County without bail. The federal defendants are in the custody of the U.S. Marshals Office and will remain in jail until their cases are resolved.

This report is based on statements from court records, police or other responders and may not contain the full scope of findings. Persons arrested or charged are presumed innocent until found guilty in a court of law or as otherwise decided by a trier-of-fact.

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2024, all rights reserved.

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