Buffalo man sentenced for role in string of credit union robberies

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — A Buffalo man will spend more than the next 14 years for his role in a string of credit union robberies across Western New York in 2019, the U.S. Attorney said Wednesday.

It was found that 48-year-old Ronald Morris of Buffalo was a part of three robberies in 2019. The first was on Feb. 27, 2019, when Morris and Adrian D. Applewhite robbed the Tonawanda Community Federal Credit Union on Delaware Street in Tonawanda.

The second one was on July 25, 2019, when Morris and Myron McCollum robbed the South Towns Federal Credit Union on South Park Avenue in Lackawanna by spraying the tellers with pepper spray and going into an unlocked safe.

The final was on Nov. 7, 2019 at the Clarence Community and School Federal Credit Union on Sheridan Drive in Clarence, where Morris, Carl Wilson and McCollum robbed the bank by ordering the employees to the ground and going through drawers. Applewhite was the getaway driver in that robbery.

All in all, they stole over $551,286 in the robberies, which Morris was also forced to pay restitution for. Morris pleaded guilty to aggravated bank robbery, attempted bank robbery and using, possessing and brandishing a firearm in furtherance of a crime of violence in August 2022.

Wilson, Applewhite and McCollum were all previously convicted for their roles. Wilson was sentenced to six years in prison in May.

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Aidan Joly joined the News 4 staff in 2022. He is a graduate of Canisius College. You can see more of his work here.

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