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2 men arrested for robbing flashy Brooklyn preacher during sermon

September 28, 2022 Rob Abruzzese
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DOWNTOWN BROOKLYN — Two men were arrested and arraigned in federal court in Brooklyn on Wednesday for an alleged armed robbery that took place during the middle of church services that were also being live streamed at the time.

The two men, Juwan Anderson and Say-Quan Pollack, both 23-years-old, were arraigned on Wednesday afternoon in front of Hon. Ramon E. Reyes, Jr. A third person took part in the robbery but has not been arrested or charged yet.

A video recording of the live stream showing three perpetrators entering the church with guns while wearing masks and dressed in all black on July 24, 2022. Anderson and Pollack were charged with Hobbs Act robbery conspiracy, robbery, and possessing and brandishing a firm arm.

“As alleged, the defendants brought guns into a place of worship, stealing from two members of the clergy, and terrifying the congregation in the process,” stated United States Attorney Breon Peace. “I commend the Special Agents and Detectives for their outstanding efforts in identifying the perpetrators who committed a crime that shocks the conscience for its brazenness. This Office will always work with our law enforcement partners to protect our houses of worship, prosecute those who engage in gun violence and ensure the safety of all members of our community.”

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As alleged in the indictment, on the morning of July 24, 2022, the defendants, along with a third person, interrupted services when they entered the church with guns. The pastor, Bishop Lamor Whitehead and his wife, who was seated nearby while holding the couple’s baby, had their jewelry and other personal items stolen from them. Prosecutors claimed that there is surveillance video from afterward of one of the defendants showing off the pastor’s gaudy, diamond ring.

Whitehead was wearing a maroon suit with a gold-trim collar with a long gold chain and multiple large rings on his hands at the time of the robbery. According to published reports, Whitehead and his wife had at least $400,000 worth of jewelry on them at the time of the incident. According to the NY Post, Whitehead also drives a Rolls-Royce.

Separately, Whitehead has been accused of stealing approximately $90,000 from one of his parishioners, according to a lawsuit filed in the Brooklyn Supreme Court in 2021.

Filed by Pauline Anderson, that lawsuit claimed that Whitehead accepted $90,000 from her in an attempt to help her purchase a home. Instead, according to the lawsuit, he pocketed the money and claimed that it was a donation towards his campaign to run for Brooklyn borough president.

One of the defendants arrested has a previous conviction for first- and second-degree robbery from 2016, for which he has already served five years in prison. Prosecutors also brought up in court papers the fact that one of the defendants was once arrested for possession of marijuana, however, they did not explain how that was relevant to the case.

The defendants face up to nine years in prison if convicted on the top charge.

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