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By Pat Reavy, Deseret News
Published: Friday, March 13 2009 12:00 a.m. MDT
WEST VALLEY CITY A former U.S. Marine wanted by Sandy police in connection with a bank robbery surrendered to investigators Thursday, but not before first trying to give his side of the story.
In an exclusive interview with the Deseret News before turning himself in, Codie Carver denied he was the person who robbed Washington Mutual Bank, 7910 S. 1300 East, on Monday. He admitted, however, that he had knowledge of the robbery and that he received a share.
But in another twist, Carver said he was only trying to help others in more need than himself. All of the money he received from the robbery, he said, was given away to random homeless people in Las Vegas.
“It went to people that needed it more than corporate America,” he told the News. “Kind of like Robin Hood steal from the rich, give to the poor.”
Investigators agreed Carver was not the man caught on bank cameras dressed in black, wearing a baseball cap and bandana over his face, who entered the bank and demanded money. But he is accused of arranging for someone else to rob the bank for him, according to a federal indictment filed late Thursday, charging Carver with one count of bank robbery.
During his 20- to 30-minute discussion with the Deseret News, Carver expressed his anger with “the system” and talked about how no one would help him when he was recently robbed, but how when a bank was robbed, authorities were all over the case.
His bitterness was evident when Carver’s parents told him they needed to start driving to the Sandy Police Department to surrender at the designated time. “I hate the police. I hate the system. I hate them all,” he said several times, noting that law enforcers should have to drive to his house if they wanted him.
Carver, however, eventually arrived with his parents in Sandy, where he was taken into custody.
Carver served a year in Iraq with the U.S. Marine Corps. His duties included collecting the body bags of U.S, soldiers, some of them his friends, from the battlefield, according to his mother. By the time Carver was sent home, doctors had diagnosed him with post-traumatic stress disorder, she said.
Carver said he visited the Veterans Medical Center 10 to 15 times after he returned home and was eventually given antidepressant medication. But he said he stopped taking it because it didn’t make him feel right.
Carver believed his PTSD was made into a bigger deal by the media than what it should have been. But when asked if it played any role at all in what had happened the past few days, he said, “It could have had something to do with it. … I can’t say yes or no,” while adding, “I’m the most honest person you’ll ever meet.”
Again repeating how “the system” wasn’t working, Carver talked about his aunt who is taking care of his grandmother, but allegedly receiving very little federal assistance. Recently, Carver had $4,000 to $5,000 stolen from him, he said. The money was supposed to go to charities and nonprofit groups aimed at helping at-risk kids
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Iraq war veteran enters guilty plea in bank robbery — (KSL NEws)
SALT LAKE CITY — Former U.S. Marine Codie Carver was accused of robbing a bank in Sandy in March of this year. Wednesday he admitted in court he is responsible for the crime.
Carver robbed the Washington Mutual Bank at 7910 S. 1300 East on March 9. He originally said he wasn’t guilty but now has changed his plea.
Carver’s family filled two full rows in the courtroom Wednesday morning as he admitted to robbing the bank.
He told the judge he wore a black mask, carried a backpack into the bank and threatened to shoot the clerk if she didn’t give him cash. That was an empty threat– Carver didn’t have a gun with him. He later turned himself in to police.
Wednesday he told the judge he was receiving medication while in the Davis County Jail– Prozac and lithium.
His family says he suffers from post traumatic stress disorder from his time in Iraq. They say he wasn’t mentally stable at the time of the robbery. But they also say post traumatic stress disorder isn’t an excuse.
“The shock has worn off that this is actually happening,” said Carver’s mother, Velenie Stens. “He stood for our country for four years, and now he’s in this mess. But we’re not blaming it all on his mental state. He made a bad choice that day and we’re standing behind him 100 percent.”
Carver will return to federal court for sentencing Dec. 18.