(St. Joseph, MI) - A New Buffalo man is still awaiting transfer to local authorities on charges stemming from a December 15th bank robbery in Michigan City. Ryan James, 43, allegedly robbed First Source Bank at 3905 Franklin Street.
According to Michigan City Police, the suspect fled with an undisclosed amount of cash in a dark-colored vehicle before responding officers arrived. A short time later, a Pokagon Band Tribal Police officer spotted the suspected vehicle in the New Buffalo area.
Berrien County Undersheriff Chuck Heit said the alleged getaway car was located outside Judy’s Motel on U.S. 12 just west of the New Buffalo city limits. Heit continued, stating that officers had the property under surveillance for about two hours until they could move in and take him into custody once a warrant was obtained for the suspect’s arrest. The warrant was issued by a Berrien County judge after ruling the evidence was sufficient enough to hold James until he could be returned to Indiana to face the allegations.
James is now being held in the Berrien County Jail on a hold from La Porte County.
Heit said there’s a required process to follow before alleged offenders are transferred to other jurisdictions where they’re charged. He anticipates James being transported to the La Porte County Jail in 30 days or less and being held until his initial hearing before a judge.
James is charged in La Porte Superior Court 1 with Level 5 felony robbery. He could face anywhere from a one to six-year sentence.
Anyone who witnessed the robbery or has information or video footage that might be helpful to the investigation is asked to contact Michigan City Police Detective Lt. Anna Painter at (219) 874-3221 ext. 1077.