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Felon Faces Gun Charge Tied To Deadly Bank Robbery

WGIL Newsroom . State News 250

ST. LOUIS (AP) — A former convict identified who authorities say is a suspect in a deadly southern Illinois bank robbery has been charged with a related weapons count.

Federal prosecutors charged 29-year-old James Watts of Cairo on Friday with being a felon in possession of a firearm.

The region’s U.S. Attorney’s Office says Watts was arrested Thursday on a railroad trestle in Cairo hours after a First National Bank branch in that city was robbed. Authorities say two bank employees were killed and a third employee was critically injured.

Prosecutors allege Watts led police on a chase while driving a vehicle that belonged to one of the bank workers.

Watts is in custody and wasn’t immediately accused of the holdup.

A message left with his court-appointed public defender wasn’t returned.

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