Bond denied for NMB bank robbery suspects, residents talk about - WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

Bond denied for NMB bank robbery suspects, residents talk about chase

North Myrtle Beach officers were fired upon during a chase on Wednesday. (Source: City of North Myrtle Beach) North Myrtle Beach officers were fired upon during a chase on Wednesday. (Source: City of North Myrtle Beach)
North Myrtle Beach officers were fired upon during a chase on Wednesday. (Source: City of North Myrtle Beach) North Myrtle Beach officers were fired upon during a chase on Wednesday. (Source: City of North Myrtle Beach)
The three suspects appear at the bond hearing Thursday. (Source: WMBF News) The three suspects appear at the bond hearing Thursday. (Source: WMBF News)

HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) – Bond was denied for the three suspects accused of the armed robbery of a North Myrtle Beach bank on Wednesday.

The bond hearing took place Wednesday afternoon in a North Myrtle Beach courtroom.

A judge decided the three suspects in the case could pose a danger to the community and could also potentially be flight risks if they were released on bond. 

Arrest warrants released Friday show that the charges for all three suspects include: two counts of attempted murder, criminal conspiracy, possession of a firearm during a violent crime, pointing and presenting a firearm, two counts of first degree assault and battery, kidnapping, wearing a mask to conceal identity, entering a bank with intent to steal, two counts of discharging a firearm into a dwelling, and failure to stop for blue lights. 

Lance Hardiman, Roderick Berklery, and Justin Pressley face all of those 13 charges, and Pressley also faces one more charge of possessing a firearm with an obliterated serial number.

Prosecutor Scott Hixson appeared in court to convince the judge not to grant bond for the three men.

He said they forced people to the ground during the robbery at South State Bank and did steal money.

Hixson said they showed indifference to human life through that armed robbery and shooting during a police chase although nobody was hurt in the end.

Hixson also said substantial resources were used to find the men.

Berklery asked the judge if hypothetically he thought the act of running away from police is an obvious reaction in that scenario. The judge told him it’s better to cooperate.

Hardiman also pointed out to the judge that the charges are alleged at this time. The judge said it’s not up to him to evaluate guilt, but instead to look at danger to the community and flight risk to evaluate bond. 

Many people around the Barefoot Resort and Water Tower Road area said they were nervous for their safety Wednesday.

Jeffrey Horton, who lives and works in the Barefoot Resort area, was working on a trailer for Mainscape when loud sounds pierced the air. That's when he saw a gray car rip down Water Tower Road with a man shooting out the window at the police following behind.

"His body was almost outside the window," Horton said. "You just started hearing pow pow pow."

Horton ran for cover in a building and police quickly showed up to secure the property. He said he and two other workers were not allowed to leave. Meanwhile, they were listening to a police scanner.

"They started talking about how they were tracking a guy who was possibly in our backyard essentially," Horton said.

Not too far from Mainscape down Water Tower Road, one man said a suspect was found hiding under a shed in his backyard.

Ultimately, police tracked down all three suspects within the perimeter they secured. By Thursday, residents started getting back to their daily lives knowing they weren't in danger.

"We just weren't willing to just go away last night and let them potentially cause more problems for someone else," said Chief J. Phillip Webster of the North Myrtle Beach Public Safety Department.

Find the latest on this story here.

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