HYANNIS – This past Saturday evening – June 8th, 2019 – at about 11:32 p.m., a Barnstable Police Detective was requested to assist patrol units investigating an armed robbery at the Steve & Sue’s Par-Tee Freeze ice cream shop at 455 West Main Street, according to a statement of facts report filed today in Barnstable District Court.
The court documents outline the details of the robbery as follows: three young employees (2 females, 1 male), ages ranging from 17 to 21-years-old, were closing the shop and about to exit the rear door when they were met by a masked man, described as being middle aged and 6’2” tall.
[HN Note: An earlier report had the victims as being 3 females. According to court documents, one of the victims’ names could be interpreted as either female or male. It turned out to be male; therefore the victims where actually 2 females, 1 male…]
The masked suspect was wearing blue latex gloves and brandishing what was described as a “small bladed knife with a yellow plastic handle.”
The masked suspect then allegedly told the young store clerks that it was a “stick up” and that he wanted all the money.
One of the young employees took off running away to safety as the suspect yelled at her to come back.
The masked suspect then allegedly forced the two remaining clerks back into the store against their will.
The clerks were then ordered to open the store’s safe and hand over bank style bags containing about “$5000.00 to $6000.00 in US Currency.”
The suspect then walked out the back of the store and across the parking lot, where he vanished into the darkness in the direction of the nearby Hyannis West Elementary School.
Barnstable Police patrol officers arrived shortly thereafter and initiated a K9 track onto the elementary school property, but were unable to catch up to the suspect.
Detailed surveillance system images were sent out to law enforcement personnel. The images not only reportedly matched the description provided from the victims, but multiple law enforcement sources positively identified the suspect as being Larry Bland, age 55, of Mashpee.
On Monday – June 10th 2019 – detectives set up surveillance on Bland at his place of employment. According to court documents, Bland is employed by Weston & Sampson in Yarmouth.
A detective later followed Bland into a store and allegedly observed he was still wearing the same red sneakers and dark colored pants that were seen in the Steve & Sue’s surveillance video.
Detectives followed the suspect as he exited the store, initiating a motor vehicle stop a short distance away.
Bland was reportedly taken into custody and a search of the vehicle allegedly yielded a folding knife with a yellow plastic handle.
Back at BPD headquarters, Bland allegedly admitted to being in the area of Steve & Sue’s the evening of the robbery.
According to the report, one of the robbery victim’s identified the folding knife with the plastic yellow handle as the knife used by the suspect during the robbery.
According to a Massachusetts Criminal History check, Lawrence Bland has had 91 adult arraignments in Orleans District, Barnstable District, and Barnstable Superior Courts.
In 1984, Bland was convicted of Burglary in Barnstable Superior Court and sentenced to 5 to 7 years with 5 years suspended sentence, according to documents filed today in Barnstable District Court.
In 1991, Bland was convicted in Barnstable Superior Court for Burglary and Assault, and was sentenced to 30 to 40 years.
Lawrence (“Larry”) Bland, age 55, of Mashpee, was arraigned today on the charges of Armed Robbery While Masked, 2 counts of Kidnapping, and 3 counts of Assault by Dangerous Weapon, to wit knife.
The following HN images show the suspect moments prior to his charges being read in open court.
Bland is currently being held on $100,000 cash bail (or $1,000,000 bond) at the Barnstable County Correctional Facility in Bourne.
* All suspects are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.
P.S. – Today’s Hytown Vignette music is by The Danish National Symphony Orchestra… [CRANK IT!]