Heather Willard / NewsBreak Denver / March 22, 2023
(Lakewood, Colo.) A federal jury found a 25-year-old Lakewood man guilty of bank robbery, possessing a firearm as a felon, and brandishing that firearm during the bank robbery.
According to facts presented at trial, James Trujillo was one of two men who robbed a Canvas Credit Union on West 5th Avenue in Lakewood on June 15, 2022. The men were armed with an AR-15 and shotgun.
Trujillo’s codefendant, Darren Michael Connolly, 26, was wearing a GPS bracelet at the time of the robbery as part of his parole for another felony conviction.
Both men had their features covered with masks and wore gloves and according to the original indictment. They approached multiple tellers and demanded money while pointing weapons. The pair then ran from the bank to a waiting getaway car, where a third suspect sat in the driver’s seat.
Connolly was arrested on June 16, 2022, and charged. On Feb. 28, Connolly pleaded guilty to three charges as part of plea agreement: aiding and abetting a bank robbery, brandishing a firearm in furtherance of aiding and abetting a crime, and possession of a firearm as a felon.
After Connolly was arrested, investigators determined that Trujillo was the second robber.
Judge Christine M. Arguello presided over the five-day trial. After five hours of deliberations, the jury returned a guilty verdict convicting Trujillo on all counts on March 17, 2023. Trujillo is scheduled to be sentenced on July 17 and Connolly is scheduled to be sentenced on July 18.
"We cannot thank the jury and the FBI’s Rocky Mountain Safe Streets Task Force enough for their tireless commitment to upholding justice and holding bank robbers accountable,” said United States Attorney Cole Finegan. “We will not tolerate such brazen criminal conduct in our communities.”
“Bank robbery is not a victimless crime,” said Denver FBI Special Agent in Charge Mark Michalek. “The threat of violence in these incidents can have a traumatic and lasting impact on the employees and customers who live through them. FBI Denver and our Rocky Mountain Safe Streets Task Force will continue to work with our local partners and the U.S. Attorney’s Office to pursue federal prosecution and reduce violence in our communities.”
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