Bank robbery suspects make tracking easier
Bank robbers don’t always get caught quickly, but usually they do get caught.
According to the FBI, 70 to 75 percent of all bank robbers are eventually nabbed.
The robber who in September stole an undisclosed amount of cash from Bank of America on Kingsbury Grade has not been found, but, according to the FBI, it sometimes takes months, even years to track down this type of criminal.
“The solution rate for bank robberies is relatively high,” said Nick Rossi, special agent of FBI.
“Most bank robbers tend to be repeat offenders. As a result it makes it easier for law enforcement to identify them.”
As was case with the robber on Kingsbury Grade, a photo was taken from the bank’s surveillance camera and distributed to law enforcement agencies in the area to increase the chances that someone will see the man.
“Usually bank robbers are more regional in their sphere of activity.” Rossi said. “It’s not uncommon to have bank robbers rob banks in Auburn, Sacramento and maybe go down to the Bay Area. You’re not going to find too many who go coast to coast.”
The Sacramento office of the FBI, a division responsible for the area of the state north and east of Bakersfield, investigated 320 bank robberies in 1992. In 1999, that number decreased to 200. Rossi speculated that today’s more sophisticated surveillance and a general improvement in the economy may account for the drop in robberies.
The FBI investigates bank robberies because they are considered a federal as well as a state violation. In general, if someone is convicted of stealing more than $1,000, the maximum penalty is 10 years in prison. If the bank robbery is committed with a weapon, the sentence could be 25 years to life.
As a rule of thumb the FBI advises banks not to disclose the amount of money stolen.
“We don’t want other potential bank robbers to be enticed by the amount of money stolen from a particular bank,” Rossi said. “Keeping that information secret helps us corroborate or verify information we receive.”
A security camera inside the bank caught the Bank of America robbery on videotape. It showed that around 3:20 p.m. on Sept. 26 a white male slipped a note to a teller. No witnesses saw a weapon on the man, but he was wearing all blue clothing and had a blue Band Aid on his large rounded nose. The white male was around 35 to 38 years old, 5 foot 10 inches, with shoulder length hair. He left the bank and ran north behind the building. Anyone with information about crime is asked to call Douglas County Sheriff’s Department at (775) 586-7250 or (775) 782-9905, or call the FBI in Carson City at (775) 882-1248 and ask for Agent Bill Johnkey.
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