Here is a Holy Cow! statement


July 24, 2005, 12:12 PM
The bank robber received a lenient sentence after robbing a bank with his kid's toy gun but here is the Holy Cow! statement.

He saw his son's black toy gun and said he thought about robbing a drug dealer. He reconsidered, thinking they had real guns.

It's hard to argue that an armed citizenry, including all bank tellers and store clerks, wouldn't be a deterrent to crime after a bank robber makes that statement!

Desperate robber gets lenient sentence
Saturday, July 23, 2005
By Theresa D. Mcclellan
The Grand Rapids Press

GRAND RAPIDS -- When working overtime, pawning his possessions and nixing food for himself to feed his family no longer worked, living near the edge of poverty pushed Lamont Davenport to desperation when he saw his son's toy gun as a way to get money for his family.

But crime is never an answer for desperation, U.S. Chief District Judge Robert Holmes Bell said Friday before sentencing Davenport to 48 months in federal prison for a March bank robbery. Davenport also received six months credit for time served -- a lenient sentence for a 20-year felony.

The sentence pleased his family and friends.

Davenport's wife, Ilyse, 48, appeared in court with the couple's five children, relatives and friends.

Before the judge arrived, Davenport, 28, dressed in an orange jail jumpsuit, turned in his seat to make faces at his 2-year-old son, Lamont, trying to get the boy to smile. The plump-cheeked toddler with twisted braids in his hair grinned at his father, saying "Hi Daddy." The other children, ages 7, 13, and 17, alternated between looking worried and smiling at their father.

Before the sentencing, Davenport told the judge he knew he was wrong, and had taught his family the difference between right and wrong.

"It pains me to remember the look in the eye of that teller. I never meant for that to happen, and I beg forgiveness," Davenport said. He also thanked Grand Rapids police detectives who brought food to Davenport's family after arresting him for the crime and seeing his family's circumstances.

It was March 2 when Davenport said he snapped under weeks of financial pressure.

The problems began building when an unexpected car breakdown caused him to spend his last $40 on a tow truck the same week he paid his rent. Unable to get enough overtime, he said he looked around the family's apartment on Antoine St. SW and started pawning items, including the television.

The pressure mounted when a teacher told Davenport his 7-year-old son was scavenging food from other students' lunch leftovers.

"I wanted to tell her how bad of a situation I was in, but I was scared she would call Protective Services on me," Davenport said in his letter to the judge.

That night, he opened the nearly empty refrigerator and snapped when his 2-year-old cried for food.

"I had 63 cents, I couldn't even buy bread for my son," he wrote. He saw his son's black toy gun and said he thought about robbing a drug dealer. He reconsidered, thinking they had real guns. He got in his car to drive and think.

When he reached Alger Heights, he noticed a row of banks on Eastern Avenue and chose the Bank One at 2430 Eastern Ave. SE. After the robbery, he was quickly arrested and the money recovered.

Judge Bell said he received letters from Davenport's friends and family noting his act was "an aberration." But the judge said there were "a wealth of resources" Davenport could have turned to for help. Many are available by calling the United Way's "211" the First Call for Help line, which connects the needy with emergency social services.

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Andrew Rothman
July 24, 2005, 01:04 PM
Hmmmmm. He "snapped" enough to commit armed robbery, but not too much that he didn't consider where he was least likely to get killed for trying.

Anyone with that degree of discrimination ought to have known that there were food shelves and social service agencies. :(

Jeff Timm
July 24, 2005, 01:57 PM
But, we live in a world where no one trusts the government.

He believed his children would be taken away if he did. Not unusual.

We have a country where the welfare department has to advertise, and still can't spend our tax money fast enough.

Another working poor story about people not having a bridge to prosperity from poverty.

Who hates when his tax money is wasted. :banghead:

July 24, 2005, 02:18 PM
He saw his son's black toy gun and said he thought about robbing a drug dealer. He reconsidered, thinking they had real guns.

Haha, for a moment he had lucidity...but that quickly faded back into the ether again.

Standing Wolf
July 24, 2005, 09:18 PM
...sentencing Davenport to 48 months in federal prison...

Free rent and food for four years! Such a deal!

Double Naught Spy
July 24, 2005, 09:35 PM
The statement is great. It is a little simplified, but will do nicely. While most people don't realize it, all sorts of animals, including people doing good things and bad things, engage in risk assessment analysis. Major carnivores would much rather scavenge than risk injury to themselves by bringing down game that potentially could hurt them, such as lions with zebras in Africa.

This guy was going to be involved in a robbery, didn't have a real gun because he apparently didn't actually want to hurt anyone, and so he opted NOT to try to rob a drug dealer who might have a real gun and try to shoot back, and instead try to rob a bank. Most banks, it seems, don't have armed guards who are willing to shoot it out with bad guys. So the bank robbery aspect was pretty safe in regard to him not getting shot. My guess is that the potential reward is greater as well. The downside, if caught by the cops as he was, there is jail time. Robbing a drug dealer would like never result in jail time.

It isn't rocket science, but risk assessment is a survival skill that is inherent in our genetic makeup. Some of us just have more of it than others and some of us manage to override better and make really stupid decisions.

July 24, 2005, 09:36 PM
Davenport, 28...The other children, ages 7, 13, and 17

So he fathered his first child when he was 11!!!!! Nothing like saying "Hey Dad lets go out partying together!" and actually being able to pull it off!

He definitely got off light though. From his own statements you can tell he though about it. If he would have just snapped he would have started robbing the first people he saw.

Randy in Arizona
July 25, 2005, 11:44 PM
anapex, I sorta suspect he just might not be the father of the older kids.

She was 37 when he was 11. :confused: :what:

But I could be wrong! :o

July 26, 2005, 08:55 AM
Randy... math much? :-D

A straight-up 20 year difference in ages is what they have... makes the mother 31 for the 17 year old, which is a pretty darned late start in this day and age. The guy's likely a second husband.

Randy in Arizona
July 27, 2005, 12:19 AM

Just read it wrong - :o :o

But I could be wrong!
I was! :o :o :o :o

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