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Local News

Two charged in Joliet bank robbery

Bolingbrook bank robbery suspect still at large

JOLIET – Two men have been charged in connection with a bank robbery that happened Tuesday in Joliet.

Joshua R. Gemmell, 26, of Joliet, and Vernell Butler, 40, of Chicago, were each charged with one count of bank robbery, a felony offense, in U.S. District Court in Chicago Wednesday morning, according to a news release from the FBI's Chicago office.

The two men were taken in for questioning soon after Tuesday's bank robbery, which occurred about 10:30 a.m. at Merchant's and Manufacturers Bank, 990 Essington Road.

Witnesses said they saw a small white car flee the area after the holdup. A few minutes later, patrol officers spotted a matching vehicle in the 1500 block of North Larkin Avenue and attempted to pull it over, Joliet Police Cmdr. Al Roechner said. A chase ensued to an alley near the 1000 block of Cora Street, where two men ran out of the vehicle.

The men were found hiding in a yard in the 1000 block of Vine Street at 10:49 a.m. They were taken into custody. Roechner on Tuesday said the pair will face charges from local police of obstructing justice and fleeing from police.

The two men took about $13,600 from the bank, according to the FBI's affidavit.

Gemmell and Butler are next scheduled to appear in U.S. District Court in Chicago at 10 a.m. Friday.

If convicted of the charges, they could face a possible sentence of up to 20 years in prison, according to the release.

Tuesday's robbery was the area's second bank robbery this week.

A teller was shot during a robbery at noon Monday at the First Midwest Bank, 450 N. Bolingbrook Drive in Bolingbrook. In that robbery, police were looking for a black man in his early 20s, about 6-foot, 190 pounds. He was wearing a mask, jeans, a black hoodie, a red hat and a black bandana with white markings.

The FBI is still investigating that incident, said Joan Hyde, a spokeswoman for the FBI's Chicago office.

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