CEDAR RAPIDS — A Cedar Rapids man who robbed the Solon State Bank in Ely, last September was sentenced Tuesday in federal court to more than three years in prison for taking $6,751.
Robert Melton, 51, pleaded guilty to one count of bank robbery May 15. During the plea hearing, he admitted to entering the Solon State Bank Jan. 17, and giving a note to a teller that stated he was a farmer about to lose his farm and he needed $12,000. He told her "not do anything and nothing would happen." The teller gave Melton some cash and Melton put it in a gray lunch box and left.
According to court documents, a witness who was in the drive through of the bank saw the robbery happen and followed Melton in his truck as he left. The witness then called 911 and reported that she was following the suspect. Linn County Sheriff’s deputies stopped Melton and after conducting a search recovered the $6,751, according to court records.
Melton was sentenced by U.S. District Chief Judge Linda Reade to 46 months in prison. Melton was also ordered to serve a three-year term of supervised release after the prison time.