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Bank robbery suspect gets $100K bond

Cameron Cleveland of Ravenna accused of Huntington holdup

By DAVE O'BRIEN Staff Writer Published: July 12, 2017 4:00 AM
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Bond was set Tuesday at $100,000 cash for Cameron Cleveland, the Ravenna man accused of Monday's robbery of the Huntington Bank on West Cedar Avenue in Ravenna, then engaging in a standoff with police and a SWAT team before surrendering.

Cleveland currently is charged with one count of aggravated robbery, a first-degree felony, in connection with the armed robbery, and is being held in the Portage County jail. At his arraignment Tuesday via video in Portage County Municipal Court in Ravenna, Judge Barbara Oswick set bond at $100,000 cash.

Cleveland attempted to request a lower bond, but Oswick reminded him of his right to remain silent and told him he was "better off getting an attorney."

"Your honor, I know this is a high-tier offense, but I could pay $200 or $300 towards bond," he told her.

"That's not going to happen," Oswick replied, before calling her next case.

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Additional charges against Cleveland are possible once the case is presented to a grand jury.

Cleveland, 39, of 601 King St., was arrested Monday night by Ravenna police with the help of the Metro SWAT team after holing up inside a West Cedar Street apartment for approximately two hours.

He surrendered without injury or incident to members of the SWAT team. A second man also was taken into custody after being found inside the apartment, but after questioning "was determined not to be involved" and released, according to Ravenna police Capt. David Rarrick.

Ravenna police said Cleveland entered the bank shortly before closing time Monday. Dressed all in black with a white scarf around his face, wearing sunglasses and carrying a handgun, he demanded money and attempted to flee on foot.

A security dye pack given to him with the money exploded as he fled, splattering it with red dye, police said. There were "at least two" customers in the bank at the time, and Rarrick said no one was injured during the robbery.

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Cleveland allegedly fled two blocks west to an apartment at the corner of North Sycamore Street and West Cedar Avenue, where he remained until Metro SWAT arrived and he surrendered without incident or injury at approximately 6 p.m. No officers were injured before or during the standoff, Rarrick said.

A search warrant was obtained from a judge, and officers recovered a handgun, U.S. currency covered in red dye from the exploding dye pack, and a white scarf and shirt also covered in red dye inside the apartment where Cleveland was hiding, according to Ravenna police.

After evacuating the building during the standoff, Ravenna police later allowed all the residents to return, said Matthew Squires, in whose apartment police initially believed Cleveland had holed up.

"Turns out they were in my neighbor's house," Squires said late Monday in an email, after he was allowed back inside his home.

Ravenna police thanked both the FBI and the Portage County Sheriff's Office for assisting in the investigation, and was "very grateful to the citizens who helped by providing tips and descriptions of the robbery suspect," according to Rarrick.

Anyone with additional information on the incident is asked to call the Ravenna Police Department at 330-296-6486.

Cleveland has a criminal history in Portage County dating back to 1997. In 2010, he pleaded guilty to and was convicted of burglary, a third-degree felony, for an incident in Kent, and sentenced to five years probation, mental health counseling and $100 restitution to the victim, court records show.

Cleveland also has two prior convictions in Common Pleas Court for carrying a concealed weapon, one each in 1998 and 2000. He was acquitted of a robbery charge in 2000, and found not guilty by reason of insanity following a 2003 trial on burglary, safecracking, breaking and entering, vandalism and criminal tools charges, according to court records.

Monday's incident was the fourth time in the past two years the bank has been robbed, including twice in March 2015. One of those was solved after a Canton man, Cortez K.D. Williams, was sentenced in August to 10 years and five months in federal prison after pleading guilty in federal court to three bank robberies, including the March 27, 2015, and Sept. 23, 2015 robberies at the Ravenna branch. Williams, who also pleaded guilty to the Oct. 2, 2015, robbery of a Huntington Bank branch in Carrolton, Carroll County, was ordered to pay $5,569 in restitution and a $300 fine in that case, the (Carroll County) Free Press Standard newspaper reported.

A suspect in a March 6, 2015, robbery at Ravenna branch has not been identified and remains at large. He was described as a white male, 6 feet tall, with reddish facial hair, wearing a black coat, blue jeans and a gray knit hat with the New England Patriots football team logo on it.


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