- The Washington Times - Tuesday, February 21, 2006

The grandmother of a Temple Hills teenager charged as an adult with kidnapping and forcing another teenager to rob a bank pleaded for his release yesterday because, she said, police have failed to catch the real bank robber.

The elderly woman called her 17-year-old grandson Jeremiah Brown Hall “a doozy” and a “typical teenager.”

“Jeremiah didn’t do it,” said the grandmother, who would not give her name. “I know who the person is, and I told the police.”

At a hearing in Prince George’s County District Court yesterday, Judge Thurman H. Rhodes kept Mr. Hall in jail on a $300,000 bail.

Mr. Hall faces kidnapping, assault and false imprisonment charges.

A preliminary hearing is scheduled for 8:45 a.m. Tuesday. If convicted, Mr. Hall could face up to 65 years in prison.

Mr. Hall was arrested and charged with kidnapping another teenager on a Metrobus and forcing him to rob a Chevy Chase bank in Bethesda on Feb. 8.

Police are investigating that case and the similar robbery of two banks in January.

In the first case, a 15-year-old was kidnapped as he walked along Barlowe Road in Palmer Park. The boy later told police that he was forced to rob two banks and was left outside the second bank while the kidnapper fled with the cash.

Mr. Hall is recorded as living in Temple Hills.

But, his grandmother, who said she is his legal guardian, said that he lived in a private boarding school in Baltimore and visited her on weekends. She said that Mr. Hall’s mother was ill and that his father is deceased.

Police have posted a composite sketch of another suspect in the robberies, but have not made an arrest.

Mr. Hall’s grandmother said she is confident that the second suspect is the one who’s responsible for the kidnappings and the robberies.

“This didn’t have to happen,” the grandmother said of the arrest. “They should have that person up here instead of Jeremiah.

“He’s a friend [of Jeremiah’s],” she said. “I gave police his name. He lives right around the corner, and they should have found him.”

The grandmother said police searched her home right after arresting Mr. Hall and again a few days later.

“They didn’t find anything,” including money, she said.

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