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1 of 2 suspects pleads guilty in New England American Bank Center robbery

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BISMARCK -- One of two men accused in the armed robbery of a southwestern North Dakota bank last fall has pleaded guilty.

Johnner Ward Jr. entered his pleas to charges of bank robbery and use of a firearm during a crime of violence Monday in federal court in Bismarck. He faces at least seven years in prison and up to life when he is sentenced May 10.

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Ward and Colt Schneider are accused of holding up American Bank Center in New England last Oct. 18. Ward was later arrested in Texas and Schneider in Florida.

Schneider has pleaded not guilty. His public defender has asked that his Feb. 26 trial be delayed for at least two months to provide more time to prepare.

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