·  Legal News, Analysis, & Commentary


Illegally Armed Serial Bank Robber Sentenced to 22 ½ Years in Federal Prison

— January 22, 2024

Sistrunk is prohibited from ever possessing a firearm under federal law because he is a convicted felon.

INDIANAPOLIS – Gary Sistrunk, 62, of Indianapolis, has been sentenced to 22.5 years in federal prison after pleading guilty to armed bank robbery, brandishing a firearm during a crime of violence, and illegally possessing a firearm as a convicted felon.

According to court documents, on November 6, 2019, Gary Sistrunk and an unknown male entered the German American Bank in Columbus, Indiana. After waiting for customers to clear out of the bank, Sistrunk began walking around the bank’s lobby acting as a lookout, while his accomplice approached the register. The men demanded money from the teller and were given $10,293 in cash. The robbers forced the bank tellers and a lone customer into a back room, threatening them not to move for 15 minutes or else they would be killed.

On January 28, 2020, Sistrunk entered a Regions Bank in Fishers, Indiana, acting alone. Sistrunk approached the teller counter and brandished a black and silver handgun, leaned into the teller’s window space, and said, “Hurry and don’t make any noise. Give me the money!” The teller complied and gave Sistrunk $10,327.00 in cash. Sistrunk took the money and fled the bank.

The following day, Fishers Police Department released a photo and surveillance footage of the robbery to local media outlets. The Department received two tips identifying Sistrunk as the robber. At the time of the robbery, Sistrunk also had an outstanding Marion County warrant for armed robbery and confinement.

On January 29, 2020, Sistrunk was arrested on the outstanding Marion County warrant. During the court-authorized search of the hotel room he was living in, investigators located his black and silver Springfield Arms handgun, the clothing Sistrunk wore when he committed the robbery on January 28, 2020, and approximately $4,000 cash. Sistrunk is prohibited from ever possessing a firearm under federal law because he is a convicted felon. Sistrunk was convicted in Marion and Shelby counties of charges including armed robbery, attempted armed robbery, and criminal confinement for his role in four separate robberies in 2012 and 2014.

Gov. Newsom Strengthens Cali's Already Strict Gun Laws
Photo by Somchai Kongkamsri from Pexels

“This criminal has engaged in a pattern of violence throughout his life,” said Zachary A. Myers, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Indiana. “Several years in prison for prior armed robberies did not convince him to change his behavior. The sentence imposed here should serve as a warning to repeat, violent offenders—reducing violence is a top priority for this office, and repeat offenders face lengthy terms in federal prison. I commend the FBI and Fishers Police Department, and our federal prosecutor, for their work to quickly arrest the defendant and hold him accountable.”

The FBI and Fishers Police Department investigated this case. The sentence was imposed by Chief U.S. District Court Judge Tanya Walton Pratt. Judge Pratt also ordered that Sistrunk be supervised by the U.S. Probation Office for 3 years following his release from federal prison.

U.S. Attorney Myers thanked Assistant United States Attorney Corbin D. Houston, who prosecuted this case.

Join the conversation!