Three Albany men are facing federal charges in connection with Tuesday’s armed robbery at the M&T Bank in North Greenbush. Christopher Cohn, 25, and Ulysses Walls, 25, are charged with Bank Robbery. Quardel Valentine, 28, is charged with Conspiracy.
According to the criminal complaint, Cohn and Walls told Valentine they would pay him $500 to drive them to and from the M&T Bank. During the drive, Cohn allegedly showed Valentine his gun and stated that he and Walls had previously robbed other banks successfully. Further, Cohn allegedly promised Valentine he would receive more money if the robbery was successful.
FBI Agents said around 11:30 a.m. Tuesday morning, Cohn and Walls walked into the bank wearing ski masks, while Valentine waited outside in the vehicle. Both Cohn and Walls allegedly flashed their guns at employees, demanded money, and threatened to kill them if they did not comply. Based on witness interviews and surveillance, Walls put his arm around the neck of a staff member, forcing the employee to the teller counter. Meanwhile, Cohn was allegedly observed firing his gun into the air. Police say the arm of a female teller was grazed by one of the bullets.
The tellers complied and handed over $10,000 in cash. The men then allegedly hopped into the getaway vehicle and fled the scene.
Prosecutors said a GPS tracking device was placed inside the bag of cash, allowing police to track the men down at the Motel 6 on Watervliet Ave. Ext. in Albany. According to court documents, that’s when Cohn got out of the vehicle and took off running. He was eventually captured by officers and allegedly found to be in possession of the stolen cash.
After apprehending Cohn, law enforcement said they encountered Valentine in the parking lot of the motel and took him into custody.
A short time later, Walls was located in the Motel 6 lobby. Investigators said Walls was accompanied by a third party, who was in possession of numerous bags, which contained ski masks, $3,800, a holster, a pair of rubber gloves, and a black leather glove.
Motel 6 staff informed investigators that Cohn and Walls, as well as others, were staying in room 231. After obtaining a search warrant, law enforcement said they searched the room and found four guns, two bags containing MDMA, and a small amount of marijuana.
All three men were appointed public defenders and are being held at the Rensselaer County Jail pending their next court appearance.
Additionally, New York State Police arrested Ahlam Talbi, 25, of Troy. She’s charged with Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance and Criminal Possession of Stolen Property. She was remanded to the Albany County Jail in lieu of bail.