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Sentencing delayed for convicted bank robber

Ronald L. Cosner (Buy photo)

Hearing moved to Dec. 22 as court awaits details of previous sex crime in Fla.

By Preston Knight - pknight@nvdaily.com

WOODSTOCK -- Sentencing for a convicted bank robber was delayed on Wednesday in Shenandoah County Circuit Court after questions were raised about sentencing guidelines and reports that he had again tried to harm himself.

Ronald Luther Cosner, 31, of 24368 Old Valley Pike, Maurertown, has pleaded guilty to robbing the First Bank branch in the Woodstock Shopping Center on June 15, getting away with $1,230.

He had been released March 28 by the Florida Department of Corrections after serving a five-year sentence for lewd sexual battery of a 14-year-old girl.

The details of that offense, particularly the age of the girl, are needed to complete sentencing guidelines for Cosner in Virginia, officials said. Because of that, sentencing was continued until Dec. 22 at 11 a.m.

Defense attorney Charles Ramsey also has had problems visiting his client because Cosner has been transferred from the Northwest Regional Adult Detention Center to the Fairfax County Jail. According to Assistant Commonwealth's Attorney Ken Alger, Cosner had cut himself extensively at the regional jail, prompting the move.

On Wednesday, he said the defendant swallowed a razor blade. Alger was unsure how Cosner gained possession of the blade.

"This is a reoccurring problem," he said. "He has been harming himself quite a lot in jail."
Cosner entered the bank, at 496 N. Main St. and demanded money in a note that he handed to a teller. He said nothing, and no weapon was used.

The note, Alger has said, informed the teller that she had 30 seconds to comply with his request for money. Cosner fled on foot and was caught the next day in Raleigh, N.C., getting off a Greyhound bus bound for Daytona Beach, Fla.

According to a criminal complaint, two family members sent a message to Cosner stating they knew he had robbed the bank and asked if he planned to surrender to police.
"[He] replied hell no, they'll have to kill me to take me back," it states.

As was the case in his last court appearance, Cosner was chained around his waist Wednesday, and a bailiff stood watch over him.

The same bank -- and the same teller -- was robbed Oct. 1. Brandon Robert Perullo, 27, has pleaded guilty and will be sentenced in February.

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