- The Washington Times - Tuesday, November 15, 2005

The woman seen on surveillance video chatting away on her cell phone during the robberies of four Northern Virginia banks continued talking yesterday when she confessed to all four heists, just hours after her arrest at a Centreville hide-out, according to court documents.

Candice Rose Martinez, 19, of Chantilly, surrendered to FBI agents shortly before 4 a.m. when they surrounded the Centreville home in the 14000 block of Pickett Oaks Road.

Miss Martinez later admitted to robbing the four Wachovia bank branches, from Oct. 12 to Nov. 4, according to an affidavit filed by the FBI in U.S. District Court in Alexandria.

“She is cooperating with law enforcement,” said Debbie Weierman, a spokeswoman for the FBI’s Washington field office.

Authorities have yet to say whether they know whom she was talking to during the robberies.

Authorities identified Miss Martinez as a suspect as recently as Saturday after national press exposure created a flood of tips, including many triggered by the sharp video images. Police also searched her apartment, in the 4000 block of Spring Pond Place in Chantilly, over the weekend.

Early yesterday morning, federal agents issued a lookout bulletin for a 1993 gray Nissan Maxima sought in connection with the case. Agents thought that Miss Martinez and Dave Chatram Williams, her boyfriend and suspected accomplice, were planning a getaway in the car to New York, New Mexico or Texas, Miss Weierman said.

Mr. Williams was arrested Monday at about 5 p.m., and the car was spotted about 10 hours later by agent Ron Chavarro near the Centreville home. Police did not give details about Mr. Williams’ arrest, but said the Nissan was occupied by two men who live in the Centreville home.

Miss Weierman said Mr. Chavarro detained the men and called for backup. Federal agents and Fairfax County police then surrounded the house and ordered Miss Martinez and anyone else inside to come out one at a time. Police said several other people were inside the home.

“They came out without incident,” said Mary Mulrenan, a Fairfax County Police Department spokeswoman. Officials said that nobody inside the house except for Miss Martinez was arrested and that the two men in the car were also released.

Police did not explain the relationship between Miss Martinez and the two men.

Jeff Clubb, 49, a neighbor, said there was often a lot of “activity and some commotion” around the house involving the two young men, who live there with their parents.

The robberies began Oct. 12 in Vienna, Va., and captivated TV viewers across the country who watched in astonishment as Miss Martinez appeared to casually talk on her phone as she slipped a teller a holdup note.

The second robbery was Oct. 21 in Manassas, followed by robberies Oct. 22 in Springfield and Nov. 4 in Ashburn.

Police said that in each case, Miss Martinez entered the bank while holding the cell phone to her ear and passing the note. During the Ashburn robbery, she showed the teller a gun in her purse before handing the teller a note.

In the Vienna robbery, court documents state, Miss Martinez displayed a box to the teller with a note taped to it demanding $75,000 in cash. The teller gave Miss Martinez the money from her teller station, which officials later determined was about $14,700, according to court documents.

None of the money has been recovered.

Miss Martinez said she and Mr. Williams planned each of the robberies, the affidavits show. Mr. Williams, also 19, used to work at the Vienna bank that was robbed, according to the documents.

Mr. Williams was arrested in Fairfax on bank robbery charges, Miss Weierman said. Police said he confessed to driving the getaway car. Mr. Williams initially appeared in court yesterday and is scheduled to appear for a preliminary hearing Friday.

Miss Martinez is being held in the Fairfax Adult Detention Center on robbery warrants in Fairfax and Loudoun counties. Miss Weierman said officials are also considering charging her with a federal crime.

“She would [then] be remanded to the U.S. Marshals Service and taken over to the Alexandria facility,” Miss Weierman said.

Amy Doolittle contributed to this report, which is based in part on wire service reports

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