Deidra Lane remains in the Mecklenburg County Jail without bond after two appearances in court Monday.
Her brother is also in the Mecklenburg County Jail. He faces federal bank robbery charges. John Gary was arrested Monday afternoon in connection with several bank robberies in the Charlotte area.
Police say Gary robbed a First Citizens Bank in Charlotte in 1999.
A Suggested Motive
The widow of slain NFL running back Fred Lane was detained without bond Monday on bank robbery charges after court documents suggested Deidra Lane might have killed her husband to stop him from reporting the theft.
The documents were unsealed containing a statement from an FBI investigator which suggested a possible motive in the murder case: Deidra Lane killed her husband to keep him from telling police about her role in the July 1, 1998, theft of $41,200 from a Wachovia Bank branch in Charlotte.
There’s another hearing scheduled for Diedra Lane this afternoon regarding a first-degree murder charge stemming from her husband’s murder last July.
In an affidavit in connection with the federal bank larceny case against Deidra Lane, FBI agent David Drew said Kisha Tennille Hudson, a friend of Fred Lane, told homicide investigators that Fred Lane “told her that Deidra Lane, his wife, had stolen money from a bank in Charlotte, North Carolina. Fred Lane told Hudson that Deidra was afraid the police were after her because she went into a bank, where her friend was a teller, and came out with a bag of money,” he wrote. U.S. Magistrate Judge Carl Horn referred to the affidavit before he told a sobbing Deidra Lane that she would not be getting bail any time soon.
“Miss Lane is accused of killing her husband, in part, over money,” he said. “Now it appears it also might have been because he tried to go to authorities with evidence in this case.” State prosecutors contend Deidra Lane killed her husband to collect a $5 million life insurance policy. She has denied the claim, and said in a 911 call after the shooting that her husband had choked and hit her.
“Her greed appears to be at the center of both the federal and state charges,” Horn said. “I find that she must be held without bond.”
Deidra Lane’s attorney, Henderson Hill, said after the hearing “there is absolutely nothing to this allegation.”
“There is a circle of Fred Lane’s friends and supporters who want to lash out at Deidra,” he said. Dressed in an orange Mecklenburg County Jail jumpsuit and leg shackles, Deidra Lane appeared before Horn at the first of her two court hearings Monday morning.
Lane Could Face Death Penalty
She also appeared in state court in connection with first-degree murder charges in her husband’s July 6 shooting death in the couple’s south Charlotte home.
At that hearing, a capital murder charge was decided by prosecutors.
At the federal court hearing, Horn released co-defendant Natosha Watson on $50,000 unsecured bond.
According to a criminal complaint, Deidra Lane and Watson conspired to steal $41,200 from the Wachovia Bank branch where Watson worked as a teller. The theft occurred on July 1, 1998. According to statements Watson gave to the FBI, the two hatched a plot to make the theft appear to be a bank robbery, right down to a bogus note which said: “Give me all you money in the second drawer, don’t say anything, hurry.”
In arguing against bond for Deidra Lane, Assistant U.S. Attorney Brian Whisler told the judge that several witnesses positively identified her from bank surveillance tapes. Combined with her police record, he said, Deidra Lane posed a danger to the community and a risk of flight.
Deidra Lane has a criminal record that dates back to 1995, Whisler said. She was charged with attempting to rob a South Carolina credit union five years ago, he said. Deidra Lane was arrested but allowed to complete a diversionary program and she was not convicted.
Whisler also brought up bad check charges from 1998 and earlier this year.
“The murder charge is a significant factor in terms of the defendant’s criminal history,” he said. “You can’t look at this federal case in a vacuum. You need to look at it’s totality.”
Hill argued that Deidra Lane had demonstrated that she was no danger to anyone and had cooperated with every request from police and the courts since her arrest in the murder case.
Horn said he would not grant bond but did order federal marshals to bring her to the Mecklenburg County courthouse later Monday for the hearing in the murder case.
Lane had been free on a $100,000 bond in the murder case since days after her Aug. 23 arrest on the murder charge. ABC Affiliate WSOC-TV Eyewitness News and The Associated Press contributed to this report.