A Georgia couple filmed a “celebratory” video flaunting $100 bills and pistols after robbing a bank at gunpoint during a weekslong crime spree throughout Atlanta, federal officials said.
Before the robbery, the woman “encouraged” her boyfriend in a text message “to kill anyone who might interfere,” according to court documents.
A judge sentenced Quantavious Cedron Arnold, the boyfriend, and Ericka Brewster, the girlfriend, to years in federal prison in connection with their alleged two-week-long spree that also involved an armed carjacking in 2019, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Georgia said in a June 21 news release.
The couple “believed resorting to violent crime would solve their financial problems,” court documents state.
McClatchy News has contacted the couple’s attorneys for comment and was awaiting a response.
“Both Arnold and Brewster have extensive violent criminal histories, and once again put innocent civilians at risk,” special agent in charge of FBI Atlanta, Keri Farley, said in a statement.
The ‘crime spree’ begins
On Nov. 12, 2019, Arnold was accused of brandishing and pointing a semiautomatic pistol at a man outside of a southwest Atlanta convenience store and stealing his car with the help of two other people, prosecutors said.
Two days later, he drove himself and Brewster in the carjacked vehicle to a BB&T bank in DeKalb County they planned to rob days before, court documents state.
At the bank, they waited in line before Arnold handed the teller a note, according to court documents and the news release, stating:
“GIVE US $5,000 OR THERE WILL BE DEATH! IF YOU TRY ANYTHING PEOPLE WILL BE IN DANGER! WE ARE WATCHING YOUR A-- SO DON’T PLAY. I DO HAVE A GUN!”
Then, Arnold proceeded to pull out his pistol and “tapped it on the glass that separated him from the teller,” according to a sentencing memorandum.
The teller gave $8,200 to the couple who then fled to Brewster’s apartment, court documents state.
There, Arnold used Brewster’s phone and filmed himself throwing stolen $100 bills “onto the floor, holding two firearms in the air, flashing gang signs, and bragging about his diamond necklace,” court documents state.
At some point after the robbery, both Arnold and Brewster abandoned the car Arnold is accused of stealing, the news release said.
About a week later, an Atlanta police officer found and arrested Arnold in the woods near the convenience store he was accused of stealing the car from, prosecutors said. He had the pistol he used during the crime spree, crack cocaine and a scale, according to the release.
He was then also arrested by the FBI, the release said.
Arnold was sentenced to 25 years in federal prison on June 14 after he pleaded guilty “to carjacking, armed bank robbery, possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, and two counts of brandishing a firearm during a crime of violence,” according to the attorney’s office. He was also convicted on charges related to the two-weeks-long spree.
Meanwhile, Brewster was sentenced to four and a half years in prison in November 2020 after pleading guilty to armed bank robbery.