OCEAN COUNTY – A Pennsylvania man accused of robbing two separate banks in Southern Ocean County earlier this year, pleaded guilty to robbery charges. He could face five years in state prison.
Ocean County Prosecutor Bradley D. Billhimer said 39-year-old Kim Nguyen of Newtown Square, Pennsylvania is scheduled to be sentenced on October 18, 2019.
The plea agreement calls for Nguyen to be sentenced to five years in New Jersey State Prison as to each count, with the prison terms to run consecutively. The sentence will be subject to the terms of N.J.S.A. 2C:43-7.2, the No Early Release Act, which requires Nguyen to serve a minimum term of 85 percent of his sentence.
Nguyen was arrested on April 14, 2019 in connection with two separate bank robberies that occurred at a Wells Fargo Bank branch in Stafford Township on March 16, 2019 and an M & T Bank branch in Barnegat Township on March 19, 2019.
In both cases, Nguyen entered the bank, approached the teller, and passed a note demanding money while indicating that “this is a robbery.” After reviewing surveillance footage from surrounding businesses and the New Jersey Turnpike Authority, Detectives from the Barnegat and Stafford Township Police Departments were able to identify a vehicle with Pennsylvania plates they believed was utilized by the individual in question to travel to and from each location. Investigation revealed that this vehicle was registered to Nguyen’s father.
It was also learned that Nguyen was on parole for a bank robbery out of Pennsylvania that occurred in 2012, which was conducted in a manner similar to the robberies out of Stafford and Barnegat. Ultimately, a fingerprint was lifted from one of the robbery notes matching Nguyen’s fingerprints. Nguyen was eventually located and apprehended in New York, and subsequently confessed to committing both robberies in Ocean County in March 2019.
Prosecutor Billhimer praised the outstanding and collective efforts of the following law enforcement agencies in helping to bring Nguyen to justice and securing today’s guilty pleas.
Prosecutor Billhimer thanks the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office, Barnegat Township Police Department, Stafford Township Police Department, Ocean County Sheriff’s Office, Federal Bureau of Investigation, New Jersey State Police, Philadelphia Police Department, NYPD 108th Precinct, Metropolitan Transportation Authority Police Department, Nassau County Police Department, Barnegat Township Police Department, Linwood City Police Department, Ocean City Police Department, Willistown Township (Pennsylvania) Police Department and the Newtown Township (Pennsylvania) Police Department.