Bank Robbery Suspect Has Mass. Court Date

Claremont — The Claremont man who was arrested Dec. 7 in Massachusetts on drug charges and is wanted in connection with three recent armed bank robberies in the Upper Valley has a court appearance Jan. 7 in Holyoke, Mass., District Court, the court clerk said Friday.

James Oberfeldt, 30, was arraigned last Monday on five charges and is being held on cash bail in Massachusetts. According to the court clerk in Holyoke, Oberfeldt is charged with heroin and cocaine possession, failure to stop or yield, driving without a license and being a fugitive from justice. He was arrested by Massachusetts State Police and Holyoke Police.

Police discovered during the arrest that Oberfeldt is wanted in Sullivan County on a probation violation related to a March 2013 drug conviction. Claremont Police Chief Alex Scott said earlier last week that when he is brought back to New Hampshire, Oberfeldt will be formally charged with the two Claremont bank robberies on Oct. 11 and Nov. 26 and one in Lebanon on Oct. 20.

In all three instances, a man brandished what was believed at the time to be a weapon but what police later determined to be an Air-soft BB gun made to look like a 9MM gun. Details of how police concluded that Oberfeldt is the bank robbery suspect have not been released. In each of the robberies, the gunman wore a black ski mask and escaped with an undisclosed amount of cash.

Scott said that the timing of Oberfeldt’s return to New Hampshire will depend on the outcome of the Massachusetts charges.