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Elderly Billings man sentenced for two bank robberies

Posted at 8:03 AM, Jun 21, 2024

BILLINGS - A Billings man convicted for his role in two bank robberies within days of each other was sentenced Thursday to two years in prison followed by three years of supervised release.

Steven Whitecloud, 88, pleaded guilty in February to bank robbery, U.S. Attorney Jesse Laslovich said in a press release.

U.S. District Judge Susan P. Watters sentenced Whitecloud and also ordered him to pay $3,092 restitution.

Whitecloud was ordered to report to the U.S. Marshals Service pending designation to a Bureau of Prisons medical facility.

Steven Jamie Whitecloud

Federal prosecutors said in court documents that on Aug. 24, 2023, co-defendant Patrick Justice entered U.S. Bank on Grand Avenue, presented the teller a note that demanded money, received money and fled in a Ford Taurus.

Four days later Justice entered Wells Fargo Bank on Main Street and again presented a demand note to the teller and told the teller he was “strapped,” which the teller interpreted as he was armed with a gun.

The teller gave Justice money, and he fled.

As officers responded to the scene, they spotted a green Taurus matching the description from the first bank robbery. Officers attempted to stop the vehicle, and, after a pursuit, pulled over the vehicle and detained Justice and Whitecloud.

Whitecloud told officers he suggested he and Justice rob banks to make money, as he had done in the past. Whitecloud was convicted in 2008 of bank robbery.

Whitecloud admitted he showed Justice what banks to rob and acted as the getaway driver.

Justice was sentenced to two years in prison for his conviction in the case.