Md., DC men face federal charges, including arson, in robbery of convenience store ATMs

Two men, one from Maryland and the other from D.C., are facing charges for an elaborate scheme to rob convenience stores with the use of explosives.

A federal grand jury returned an indictment for arson, commercial robbery and use of a destructive device, among others for Stephen Kennedy, 33, of Temple Hills, Maryland, and Donnell Kelly, 33, of D.C.

Prosecutors said that from January 2021 to January 2022, the men planned to use explosives to rob 7-Eleven stores and take the cash in the stores’ ATMs. These were done while the stores were open.

Kennedy and Kelly used the explosive devices to set fire to the buildings. The fire forced the store to close and shut off power to the security cameras, which would enable them to go back to the location and burglarize the ATMs uninterrupted, a news release from the United States Attorney’s Office District of Maryland said.

To cover their tracks, officials say the men burned vehicles and filed false police reports, prosecutors said. The indictment alleges that the loss was at least $249,000.

Kennedy and Kelly are also charged with being felons in possession of a firearm and an explosive device, respectively. Kennedy is charged with carrying an explosive during the commission of a felony.

Both men are currently being held in custody and will be back in court on Friday. The men face a lengthy sentence if convicted.

Abigail Constantino

Abigail Constantino started her journalism career writing for a local newspaper in Fairfax County, Virginia. She is a graduate of American University and The George Washington University.

Melissa Howell

Melissa Howell joined WTOP Radio in March 2018 and is excited to cover stories that matter across D.C., as well as in Maryland and Virginia. 

Federal News Network Logo
Log in to your WTOP account for notifications and alerts customized for you.

Sign up