Man who robbed, set fire to bank gets federal prison

Joseph Lavoie.

By: The Associated Press

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PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) – Federal authorities say a man is headed to prison for robbing and setting fire to a bank in Rhode Island last year.

The U.S. Attorney’s office says 49-year-old Joseph Lavoie was sentenced last week in Providence federal court to five years behind bars. The former Providence man pleaded guilty in April to bank robbery by force or violence and use of fire to damage property used in interstate commerce.

Court documents say Lavoie jumped over a counter at a North Providence branch office of Citizens Bank, opened a cash drawer and began taking money on July 6, 2016. Authorities say he assaulted and threatened a female teller, and then ignited several items in the bank.

Police found Lavoie behind the teller counter.

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