Feds hold alleged serial bank robber freed under NY bail reform law

Adam Warner
January 19, 2020 - 1:47 pm
Gerod Woodberry



NEW YORK (1010 WINS) – A suspected serial bank robber has been held by federal authorities after they say he went on to rob more banks this month after being released under New York’s new bail reform law.

Gerod Woodberry, 42, was in Brooklyn federal court on Sunday. He agreed to be held by the feds under a temporary order of detention pending a hearing at 11 a.m. Friday. No application for bail was made by Woodberry.

"The initial appearance has concluded.  Defendant Woodberry did not have a bail package to offer today and was ordered detained by Magistrate Judge Steven M. Gold pending a bail hearing on Friday, January 24, 2020 at 11 a.m." the U.S. Justice Department said in a statement to 1010 WINS.

Woodberry's defense attorney, Sam Jacobson, didn't ask for  bail in the case, though he may do so at Friday's hearing.

Jacobson accused Eastern District U.S. Attorney Richard Donoghue of trying to make the case a referendum on New York's controversial bail reform law, which many in law enforcement have been highly critical of. Donoghue had previously issued a statement questioning the wisdom of the New York bail law.

New York State’s new bail reform law has been a major focus in Woodberry’s case. He’s wanted for at least six heists in Brooklyn and Manhattan since late December.

He had been arrested on Jan. 9 and charged in four robberies, but he was ultimately let go under New York’s new bail reform law. Federal prosecutors say he went on to rob two more banks after his release, including a Chase bank in downtown Brooklyn on Jan. 10—hours after his release.

Under the new bail reform laws, Woodberry is considered a nonviolent defendant. No weapons were used during the robberies—he allegedly passed notes to bank tellers. Thus, the state law prevents judges from setting bail for him.

Woodberry is now facing federal bank robbery charges. If convicted he faces up to 20 years in prison.