He started with a small store and graduated to two banks. But Kevin Blakeney, 30, didn't work at or own them — he robbed them.
And Tuesday morning in Fairfax County Circuit Court, he pleaded guilty to three robberies. A short man with dark hair, Blakeney, of no fixed address, answered affirmatively when Judge Alfred Swersky asked him if he was entering his pleas freely and voluntarily.
"Do you understand that the possible maximum sentence for each of these offenses is a prison term, up to life? asked Swersky. "Yes, sir," replied Blakeney.
Assistant Commonwealth's Attorney Jay Nanavati then presented details of the prosecution's case. He said that, on Aug. 6, around 4:30 p.m., Blakeney robbed a GNC store at 5645 Stone Road in Centreville. First, though, he browsed around the store a bit and asked about some products.
"Then he walked behind the cash register and produced a knife," said Nanavati. He said Blakeney told the clerk to give him the money in the register — some $200 — which she did. "He told her not to call the police and not to follow him," said Nanavati. "Then he cut the phone cable."
Next came the First Virginia Bank on Saint Germain Drive in Centreville. On Aug. 11, at 12:10 p.m., Blakeney handed a note to a teller behind the counter. Said Nanavati: "It said, 'I have a knife, gimme the money. I don't want to hurt you.' At first, the teller gave him only ones, and then he said, 'Gimme all of it.'" After obtaining the cash, Blakeney ran out of the bank.
Four days later, Aug. 15 around 1:45 p.m., he robbed the Chevy Chase Bank inside the Giant Food store in the Colonnade Shopping Center. He gave a note to a teller, 21, of Centreville.
Said Nanavati: "The note said, 'I have knife. Gimme all the money. Don't make me hurt someone.'" Then, he said, after she gave Blakeney some cash, he told her, "Gimme more." Afterward, he fled.
By this time, police had obtained a photo of the First Virginia Bank's robbery suspect and, on Aug. 18, they arrested Blakeney at the Breezeway Motel in Fairfax. There, said Nanavati, "He confessed to all these offenses and blamed his heroin addiction." Sentencing will be Feb. 20.