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Posted on Mon, Oct 17, 2011 : 5:56 a.m.

Illinois man who robbed Ann Arbor Bank of America branch to serve 3-15 years in prison

By Kyle Feldscher

The Illinois man who pleaded no contest to a charge of armed robbery for robbing the Bank of America branch on Briarwood Circle in August 2010 will spend three to 15 years in prison.

Sean Watson, 34, of Calumet City, Ill., offered no reason for why he decided to rob the bank on Aug. 31, 2010, making off with more than $3,000 for a short time. He was arrested in Jackson County 30 minutes after the robbery, and all of the money he stole was recovered by police.

Watson’s lack of a criminal history was one of the reasons Washtenaw County Trial Court Judge Melinda Morris said she would follow the recommended sentence of three to 15 years. The sentence was consistent with an agreement reached between defense attorneys, Washtenaw County prosecutors and Morris in August.

“You have no criminal record of any kind and yet you’ve chosen to admit to an offense punishable by a life sentence,” Morris said to Watson in court.

Watson has credit for 413 days served and may need to pay restitution, even though all of the money he stole from Bank of America was recovered. An agreement on restitution must be reached in the next 90 days, Morris ruled.

Samuel Churikian, Watson’s attorney, said Watson is not a threat to become a repeat offender.

“This is an isolated incident,” he said. “I don’t know what he was thinking on the day of the incident, but I don’t think there’s any threat of reoccurrence.”

Watson was originally charged with bank robbery and a felony firearms charge along with the armed robbery charge. However, the bank robbery and felony firearms charges were dropped as a part of his plea agreement.

A charge of armed robbery carries a maximum of life in prison.

Kyle Feldscher covers cops and courts for He can be reached at or you can follow him on Twitter.