D’Souza gets 10 years for bank robbery

By Frank Lewis

October 1, 2013

Frank Lewis

PDT Staff Writer

The man who robbed a Portsmouth bank in July will spend the next 10 years in Prison. On Tuesday, a Scioto County Jury found Christopher D’Souza, 39, of Portsmouth guilty of aggravated robbery and robbery. Immediately following the return of the guilty verdicts, D’Souza was sentenced by Judge Howard H. Harcha, III to 10 years in prison.

The conviction stems from a July 6, 2013 incident at the WesBanco branch at 924 Gallia St. Bank tellers hit panic buttons and called the Portsmouth Police 911 dispatch center at approximately 9:44 a.m. Bank employees reported to police that they had been robbed by a man in a grey hooded sweatshirt, who had demanded money while pointing an item concealed by the hoodie at the teller.

Portsmouth Police were assisted by bank employees who followed D’Souza from the bank after he ran from the robbery scene. Patrolman Steve Brewer of the Portsmouth Police Department arrested D’Souza on Third Street within minutes of the robbery. Police said they were also assisted by a citizen of Portsmouth who led police to clothing D’Souza had hidden in a dumpster minutes after the robbery.

The state’s case was presented by Scioto County Prosecutor Mark Kuhn and Assistant Prosecutor Joseph Hale. The state presented five witnesses who identified D’Souza as the man who robbed the bank, then ran from the scene. The state also presented DNA evidence from the clothing, which was matched to D’Souza.

In pronouncing the sentence, Harcha cited D’Souza’s extensive criminal record and the nature of the bank robbery and how they were involved in the sentencing. D’Souza remains lodged in the Scioto County Jail awaiting transport to a facility operated by the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Corrections.

Frank Lewis may be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 252, or at flewis@civitasmedia.com. For breaking news, follow Frank on Twitter @FrankLewisPDT.