Dougherty gang: 2 siblings to be resentenced for Georgia bank robbery

Two of three siblings arrested in Colorado after a cross-country crime spree have to be resentenced for a bank robbery in Georgia.

A three-judge panel of the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals cleared the sentences of Lee Grace Dougherty and Dylan Dougherty Stanley based on a procedural error by the lower court. But the panel upheld the sentence of Ryan Dougherty because his appeal did not challenge his sentence on procedural grounds.

The three pleaded guilty after reaching agreements with prosecutors. A federal judge in December 2012 sentenced all three siblings to serve 35 years and 8 months, well above sentencing guidelines.

A new sentencing date for the bank robbery has not been scheduled.

The trio still face sentencing in Florida.

 

-- Crime Spree --

The Dougherty siblings crime spree started on Aug. 2, 2011 when police said they fired 20 shots at a Florida police officer attempting to pull over their white Subaru Impreza for speeding.

"At first it was like, 'Wow, you know, they're shooting at me.' And then it turned to, 'I just want to catch them before they hurt anybody,'" Zephyrhills, Fla., police officer Kevin Widner said of the confrontation.

Five hours later, the trio, wearing masks, robbed a bank in Valdosta, Ga., police said. One of them fired an AK-47 rifle into the ceiling as they walked through the front door. Another was armed with some type of machine gun, while the third collected the cash, police said.

Ryan, a convicted sex offender, had 14 previous felonies on his record and was accused of sending hundreds of explicit text messages to an 11-year-old girl he had met online. Dylan had arrests for marijuana-possession.

Lee Grace worked as a stripper at a club called Cheaters and had been arrested for five felonies, including battery and hit-and-run, and six misdemeanor offenses.

Dubbed the Dougherty Gang, the two brothers and sister were the subject of a national manhunt before they were caught in Colorado after a high-speed police chase and shootout near Walsenburg. They were listed on the FBI's Most Wanted List and defined as heavily armed and extremely dangerous.

 

-- Colorado sentences --

For the chase and shootout in Colorado, Dylan Stanley-Dougherty, received the maximum prison sentence -- 32 years -- for his guilty plea to one charge of first-degree assault. He was accused of firing an assault rifle at pursuing officers before they were captured.

Ryan Dougherty was sentenced to 18 years after pleading guilty to five counts of menacing.

Their sister, Lee Grace Dougherty, was sentenced to 24 years.

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