East Bernstadt woman accused of robbing two banks, stealing vehicles plans to accept plea agreement

LONDON – An East Bernstadt woman who is facing multiple federal charges for allegedly stealing two vehicles in July 2018 before robbing two Laurel County banks at gunpoint was scheduled to have her case presented to a jury at trial next month, though the trial has now been continued as she plans to accept an agreement with prosecutors.

The jury trial for Jennifer L. Moore, 50, was set to begin July 1 after multiple continuances dating back to at least November 2018. But the latest date has now been set aside as well as U.S. District Judge Robert E. Wier has granted a motion by Moore’s attorney for re-arraignment.

The motion was entered late last month and granted Monday, which court records show, describes the reasoning for the request being due to Moore’s intention to enter a guilty plea in the case in exchange for an offer from prosecutors.

Court records show no specific details concerning what charges Moore may be pleading to or what the offer from prosecutors entail, though it is likely she is going to receive a reduced sentence as part of the agreement.

Judge Weir has set Moore’s re-arraignment for the same date as her previously-scheduled trial. Moore is set to appear in U.S. District Court in London on July 1 at 10:30 a.m. to enter her plea.

Three other trial dates have been continued during the lifespan of the case, with the most recent coming early last month after Moore’s attorney, Willis G. Coffey, asked that her May 14 trial date be set aside for at least 45 days to allow for further plea negotiations with prosecutors. In Coffey’s request to continue that date, he stated that prosecutors had provided Moore with a written offer in exchange for her guilty plea, but that she had asked for some changes to be made to the offer and that prosecutors were considering them.

Coffey’s May motion to continue also listed Moore’s mental health as a factor for the request, something that has allegedly been a concern since at least earlier this year when a January trial date was set aside to allow for Moore to undergo a mental health examination at a federal prison in Houston, Texas.

A psychiatric report concerning Moore’s examination was filed with the court upon its completion, but it was placed under seal and the contents cannot be examined. However, Coffey’s request last month claimed that psychologists who evaluated Moore during the examination found that she allegedly suffered from “a severe mental defect or disease” at the time of the alleged offense.

Moore was arrested July 19, 2018, after officers with the London Police Department were dispatched to investigate a call concerning an armed robbery at Forcht Bank off KY 192, but within minutes of their departure another call was received about an armed robbery at Cumberland Valley National Bank inside the London Shopping Center.

According to police, witnesses called in to the Laurel Dispatch Center to inform them of what kind of vehicle had been seen leaving the scene and the direction it was headed. Police found the vehicle that had been described at Calvary Baptist Church, where the driver, identified as Moore, allegedly fled on foot.

She was quickly caught and taken into custody. Police allegedly found her to be in possession of a 9 mm pistol, which was believed to be used during the robberies. It was also later determined that the vehicle Moore used during the alleged robberies had been reportedly stolen earlier that day. In addition, police learned that Moore had also stolen another vehicle at gunpoint earlier in the month.

Moore was indicted by a U.S. grand jury in August 2018 on two counts of motor vehicle theft – carjacking, two counts of carry/use of a firearm during and in relation to a crime of violence and two counts of bank robbery by force or violence.

Moore was jailed in the Laurel County Correctional Facility until January, when she was transported to the examination facility in Houston. Local jail records do not indicate whether or not she has returned.

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