A Lincoln man who took a cab to rob a bank at gunpoint last year got 25 to 40 years in prison for the crime and two others.

Donnell A. Murphy, 31, pleaded no contest to two counts of robbery and one of attempted robbery.

He'd used a gun in all three robberies.

"I'm sorry for the mistakes I made," Murphy said before Lancaster County Judge Jodi Nelson sent him to prison.

His attorney, Peter Blakeslee, said drugs and alcohol, though not an excuse, had contributed to the crime.

Police said Murphy was identified as the man responsible for the July 13, 2018, robbery at the West Gate Bank near 17th and South streets soon after police released images of the thief to news media and on social media.

Just before 9 a.m., he'd handed a teller a handwritten note saying to put $10,000 on the counter, police said in an affidavit to arrest him.

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"If I don't make it out you go with me," the note said.

Police said Murphy pulled out a handgun and pointed it toward the teller before leaving with money.

Investigators traced the note, written on the back of a letter from a health club, to the home of Murphy's girlfriend, where they learned that Murphy had called a taxi that morning.

A Happy Cab driver told police he'd picked up a man, who looked like Murphy, at the house near 20th and F streets and dropped him off near 17th and South, where he said he needed to "pick up a check." Five or 10 minutes later, the man came back, and the driver took him back to the house.

Prosecutors said Murphy also used a gun to rob a Casey's on June 24, 2018, and in an attempted street robbery of a man on June 21, 2018.

Nelson called them very serious crimes. She said a lot of people have substance-abuse issues and don't go out and rob people and threaten them with a gun.

"That's not a logical sequence," the judge said.

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