Pair face charges for bank robberies

Following bank heists across Central New York and into Massachusetts — including the robbery at the Alliance Bank in Oneida earlier this year — one of the accused thieves told law enforcers that they never carried guns and ditched their clothing in a charity clothing bin.

Nicholas Ferrone, 21, of Utica, and Zachariah Edwards, 21, of Frankfort, are both facing charges of robbery in Federal Court.

Authorities said the two men worked together to rob six banks between Jan. 14 and March 4, including one in Massachusetts. The first bank robbed was the Alliance Bank on Genesee Street in Oneida on Jan. 3, where authorities said Ferrone acted alone and stole $2,240 cash.

Then he recruited Edwards, according to court documents, and Edwards later came clean to investigators.

"Edwards stated that some time after the robbery in Oneida, Ferrone approached Edwards and explained how it was easy to rob the banks," said FBI Special Agent Eugene J. Tenuta in his complaint report. The pair used Ferrone’s mother’s 2004 Cadillac Escalade and a rented Chevy Impala to commit the robberies.

According to the report, the two men would hand a note to the bank teller claiming that they were armed and demanding money. In total, they stole roughly $23,000 from the seven banks.

The robberies were:

¿ Jan. 3: Alliance Bank, Oneida.

¿ Jan. 14: Berkshire Bank, Guilderland.

¿ Jan. 28: Chase Bank, Dewitt.

¿ Feb. 13: Trustco Bank, Guilderland.

¿ Feb. 25: Bank of America, Chicopee, Massachusetts.

¿ March 4: M&T Bank, Syracuse.

Authorities said Edwards turned himself into authorities on March 8, Ferrone on March 11. They face a maximum of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine for each robbery.