Entries in Bank Robbery (21)


Man Accused of Robbing Bank an Hour After His Release

Lane County Jail (EUGENE, Ore.) -- An Oregon man could very well have set a record for the shortest stretch of time between lockups, requiring a mere 55 minutes to land himself back in jail after being released.

Christopher Franklin Weaver, 33, walked out of Lane County Jail as one of 32 recently released inmates on Friday, walked about a mile or so and allegedly promptly robbed a bank, police in Eugene, Ore., said.

He was caught by authorities at the Pacific Continental Bank and returned to Lane County Jail. Nobody was injured during the alleged robbery.

“This is pretty fast, someone getting released at 11:00 and then they arrive back 55 minutes later,” Sgt. Carrie Carver of the Lane County Sheriff’s Office told ABC News.  ”I can’t say it’s the shortest time, but it’s certainly the most notable because of the nature of the crime.”

Law enforcement in Lane County was forced to release 32 inmates, including Weaver, in order to balance the budget for the year, Carver said.

The released inmates were imprisoned on charges ranging from assault and sex abuse to drug possession and drunk driving. Weaver was incarcerated for parole violations for sex abuse and for unlawful use of a vehicle.

Officials at the Lane County Sheriff’s Office could not confirm whether or not Weaver, who now faces federal bank robbery charges, has been assigned an attorney.

Magistrate Judge Tom Coffin ruled Weaver a flight risk at his initial hearing in U.S. District Court and he will be locked up for “as long as the feds pay for that bed,” Carver said.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


L.A. Cops Searching for Bandits Who Strapped Fake Bomb to Bank Employee

ABC News(LOS ANGELES) -- Authorities in California are searching for a pair of bandits who allegedly kidnapped a bank manager, strapped what they said were explosives to her stomach and ordered her to rob her own bank.

The robbers made off with a "significant" amount of money and police later determined that the device, though convincing, was a fake.

The victim described the suspects as "two black men, wearing ski-masks, and one had a handgun," according to the Los Angeles Sheriff's Department.

The woman was allegedly abducted on Tuesday night and held overnight, according to ABC News' Los Angeles affiliate KABC. She was taken to the Bank of America in East L.A. on the 900 block of South Atlantic Boulevard where she worked around 8:30 a.m. on Wednesday and instructed to rob it.

"A device was strapped to the woman's body," said Capt. Mike Parker of the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department. "She was told that it was explosives and she was ordered to go into the bank, take out all the money. She did do that in fear for her life."

"While she was inside the bank, there were other employees present. She explained to them what was happening," Parker said. "She took the money out of the bank and threw it out the door to the bank robbers."

The ski mask-wearing thieves fled with the money in a two-door car, possibly a white Kia, according to KABC.

The bank manager was left with the device on her and authorities called a bomb squad. Los Angeles County Sheriff's investigators and FBI agents, including bomb technicians, responded to the scene. The device was removed from the woman and detonated by a bomb robot, according to authorities.  

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


‘Plain Jane Bandit’ Goes on Bank Robbery Spree

Los Angeles Field Office(LOS ANGELES) -- A bank robber known as the “Plain Jane Bandit” is believed to have hit six Los Angeles area banks in recent weeks, including four in a 24-hour period.

During the robberies, the woman uses written and verbal demands, and says an accomplice is waiting for her outside the bank.

Witnesses describe the suspect as an Hispanic female between 5-foot-3 and 5-foot-5, weighing about 150 to 170 pounds, and between 35 and 40 years old.

The woman’s nickname came from an interview with a witness in one of the earlier robberies, in which the witness described the suspect as a “plain Jane.”

Witnesses also say the woman may have a scar below or next to her right eye, as well as a tattoo on her right shoulder area.

The first robbery the “Plain Jane Bandit” was linked to was on July 12, followed by another one on July 19. She was quiet for a few days, until she began a spree, hitting two banks on July 23, followed by another two on July 24.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Bulb-Eating Bank Robber Busted

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- A New York City man who sought fame by breaking painful records like speed-eating light bulbs apparently isn't too bright.

Cops were looking for Robert Williams in connection with a string of eleven bank robberies in New York, reports the New York Daily News.

When Williams returned to one of the Brooklyn banks he allegedly knocked over on Wednesday, employees immediately recognized him -- and not for his bulb-eating record.

Williams was arrested and charged with robbing eleven banks.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Police Stop, Handcuff Every Adult at Intersection 

Comstock/Thinkstock(AURORA, Colo.) -- Police in Aurora, Colo., searching for suspected bank robbers stopped every car at an intersection, handcuffed all the adults and searched the cars, one of which they believed was carrying the suspect.

Police said they had received what they called a “reliable” tip that the culprit in an armed robbery at a Wells Fargo bank committed earlier was stopped at the red light.

“We didn’t have a description, didn’t know race or gender or anything, so a split-second decision was made to stop all the cars at that intersection, and search for the armed robber,” Aurora police Officer Frank Fania told ABC News.

Officers barricaded the area, halting 19 cars.

“Cops came in from every direction and just threw their car in front of my car,” Sonya Romero, one of the drivers who was handcuffed, told ABC News affiliate KMGH-TV in Denver.

From there, the police went from car to car, removing the passengers and handcuffing the adults.

“Most of the adults were handcuffed, then were told what was going on and were asked for permission to search the car,” Fania said. “They all granted permission, and once nothing was found in their cars, they were un-handcuffed.”

The search lasted between an hour and a half and two hours, and it wasn’t until the final car was searched that police apprehended the suspect.

“Once officers got to his car, they found evidence that he was who they were looking for,” Fania said. “When they searched the car, they found two loaded firearms.”

The actions of the police have been met with some criticism, but Fania said this was a unique situation that required an unusual response.

“It’s hard to say what normal is in a situation like this when you haven’t dealt with a situation like this,” Fania said. “The result of the whole ordeal is that it paid off. We have arrested and charged a suspect.”

The other people who had been held at the intersection were allowed to leave once the suspect was apprehended.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Bank Robbery Fails When Suspect Gets Stuck in Air Duct

Hemera/Thinkstock(CHICAGO) -- He wore a dreadlocks wig, covered his face, and plotted his escape. But the one thing a bank robber in suburban Chicago didn’t account for, according to police, was getting stuck in an air duct.

Charles Estell, 38, was charged with one count of bank robbery in federal court Sunday.

Investigators said Estell held them on an 11-hour stand-off at the Bank of America branch at a strip mall in Oak Lawn, with a restaurant and other stores nearby.

According to a criminal complaint released by the FBI Chicago office, Estell staked out the bank and somehow learned there was an opening in the building’s roof that led to the bank vault.

Two female bank employees were in the vault at around 2:15 p.m. Saturday, getting ready to close for the day, when a man suddenly walked into the vault.

The robber was wearing a ski cap, had a bandana covering his face, and a dreadlocks wig.  He was holding a gun in his hand, and according to the complaint, told the employees, “This is a robbery, get down on the floor, keep your heads down. I don’t want to kill or hurt you, I just want the money.”

The robber then tied the employees’ hands with black zip-ties, and duct-taped their mouths and feet, telling the employees, “I have someone outside, I don’t want to shoot you, give me 10 minutes.”

After he shoved about $100,000 into a backpack and a duffle bag, the FBI says surveillance video captured the robber pacing back and forth inside the bank branch.

More than 60 SWAT members and other officers arrived on the scene and spent nearly 11 hours searching for and trying to communicate with the bank robber, whom they suspected still had to be somewhere inside the strip mall.

Just before 1 a.m. Sunday, a broken window and a trail of blood led authorities to an air duct in a neighboring office building. Police found Estell stuck inside the duct, unable to free himself.

Investigators are still trying to figure out how he learned about the vault’s location.

According to Illinois Department of Corrections records, Estell was out on parole after serving time on vehicular hijacking charges.

Oak Lawn Police said the two female bank employees were shaken up, but not injured.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Teller Thwarts Attempted Bank Robbery by Saying Bank Closed

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(CHICAGO) -- A bold Chicago bank teller foiled an attempted heist by politely telling the alleged robber with a demand note that the bank was closed and she should come back tomorrow. The woman was arrested when she came back a few days later.

A bank employee spotted the woman, Olga Perdomo, April 2 outside the bank with a man and called the police. When police arrived, they recognized the man, Willie Weathersby, as the person suspected of robbing the same bank of $2,589 nearly two weeks earlier.

Perdomo had entered the Albany Bank and Trust around 5 p.m. on March 29, wearing dark, plaid pajama pants, according to a criminal complaint filed Tuesday in U.S. District Court.

She approached the counter and gave a teller a note that said, “Give me all your money, no cops, no dye pack,” according to the complaint.

“According to teller B, he/she took the note and told the female that the bank was closed and that she should just come back tomorrow,” the complaint said. “The female then exited the bank.”

Four days later, a bank employee who had seen the surveillance video from the attempted robbery “observed a female just outside the bank” and recognized her “as resembling the individual who attempted to rob the bank” 10 days earlier, according to the complaint.

The employee called the police and when they arrived, they recognized Weathersby in connection to a March 23 robbery at the same bank. Perdomo was arrested immediately and, after a “brief foot chase,” Weathersby was arrested, too.

Both allegedly admitted their respective involvements in the robberies to police. Perdomo was charged with attempted bank robbery and Weathersby was charged with bank robbery.

The duo appeared in U.S. District Court Tuesday.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Bank Hostage Standoff Ends in Fiery Shootout

Stockbyte/Thinkstock(BUENA PARK, Calif.) -- A bank manager at a Southern California bank who was held hostage has been rescued safely following a fiery shootout between a robbery suspect and SWAT team officers.

Police and SWAT team officers shot the suspect after they swarmed Saehan Bank in Buena Park, Calif., at about 3 p.m., according to ABC News Los Angeles station KABC.

Authorities said the suspect continued to be uncooperative after the shooting, the station reported.

Aerial pictures show the suspect being taken out of the bank on a stretcher and placed into a paramedic vehicle.

The suspect's condition was not immediately known. It was unclear what the suspect's motive or demands were, officials said.

The suspect entered the bank at 11 a.m. and let all the employees leave except the female bank manager after an employee asked if they could leave, according to KABC.

The bank manager's condition is unknown at this time.

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Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


‘Spider-Man’ Bandit Strikes Again

Hemera/Thinkstock(WILMINGTON, N.C.) -- Like the “real” Spider-Man, he always manages to slip away -- but this guy is no hero.  The costumed bandit, dressed as Spider-Man villain “Venom,” has robbed several convenience stores in Wilmington, N.C., driven by a base appetite for Newport cigarettes and cash.

“He came, demanded me to open the register and get the cash and he was holding his gun like this,” clerk Mark Headstrong told ABC News affiliate WWAY, describing the robbery that occurred more than a week ago. “I responded to his request because he was holding a gun.”

The most recent robbery, the fourth to occur in a three-week period, happened Oct. 16. Just like the other stickups, the man entered a convenience store in the morning toting a gun and wearing a Venom mask, which is a black version of Spider-Man's mask. The thief demanded Newport cigarettes and cash, and although the cops were called to the scene, the suspect slipped away. A police K-9 team tried, unsuccessfully, to track him.

“We’re looking for any information of people that are selling cigarettes on the street,” Wilmington Police Dept. Lt. Tom Witkowski told WWAY. “This person has gotten a fair amount of cigarettes each time he’s committed one of these robberies, and we have information that he may be turning around and selling them on the street.”

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Bad Handwriting Foils Bank Heist

Ryan McVay/Photodisc/Thinkstock(NEW CASTLE, Del.) -- Accused bank robber Thomas Love may want to invest in a typewriter or a computer printer.

He was arrested Saturday shortly after he slipped a note to a teller at the WSFS Bank in New Castle, Del., demanding money in a bag with no dye packs, according to police. The teller handed him back the note.

“After receiving the note, the teller could not decipher what Love had written, and handed it back to him, and asked that he rewrite it so that it could be re-read,” said a news release from the Delaware State Police.

Love, either panicked or frustrated, took back his note and left the bank with no money.

After he fled, the tellers conferred and determined that it had been a robbery attempt. They called the police and a description of the suspect was given to state troopers and New Castle county police. A police officer located Love and arrested him for attempted robbery.

Love was unarmed and no one was injured during the incident.

“We get plenty of notes passed, but none where they’ve been illegible,” said St. Paul Shavack, the Delaware State Police public information officer. “We found the note down the street in a trash can.”

“We had to call in the hieroglyphics expert,” he joked.

Shavack said the note could not be totally deciphered but said Love wrote something about “no dye packs,” referring to money banks sometimes give out during robberies where the stacks have a dye that detonates onto the money and the robber, making both easy to identify.

The bank has not released the note or any surveillance footage since they are considered evidence in the case.

The situation mirrors a comedic sequence in the Woody Allen movie Take the Money and Run where Allen’s character attempts to rob a bank but the teller cannot read his demand note and argues with Allen over the line, “I’m pointing a gun at you.”

“That looks like ‘gub.’ It doesn’t look like ‘gun,’” the teller says. Eventually a group of tellers confer, bickering over Allen’s heist note. He is eventually arrested and taken to jail.

Love, 40, has been charged with attempted robbery and is being held at the Howard R. Young Correctional Institute on a $2,000 bond.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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