Several court documents filed on Tuesday in the case of the 2003 Xerox Federal Credit Union show a more clear understanding of Richard Wilbern’s defense.
The 2003 robbery at the bank left one dead and another wounded.
According to documents filed by Wilbern’s attorney, he was not the only suspect in the case. Another man, identified as Thomas Lofton became a suspect in 2003. Months after Lofton had been indicted, investigators received a tip about Wilbern which, attorney’s argue, caused the focus in the case to shift.
The same court document points out that both Wilbern and Lofton were represented by the Federal Public Defender’s Office, without knowing about one another. The government raised the issue of conflict of interest in court last month. Wilbern’s attorney argues that the information was knowingly withheld in attempt to delay court proceedings. The document ends with the defense asking the court to issue an order for all potential conflicts of interests to be identified.
A separate document also reveals that Lofton came to investigators radar as early as 2002 when he committed more than 10 violent home invasions and armed robberies. Lofton was convicted and later sentenced to 47 years in prison.
More documents filed on Tuesday by Wilbern’s attorney ask that the trial be moved to the Buffalo-area because media attention prevents him from getting an impartial jury.
Wilbern also requests that a charge be dropped because a bank robbery is not a violent crime as law lays out.