Articles Tagged with Bank Robbery

Bank robbery has been a federal crime in the United States since 1934. This includes National banks, state member banks, savings and loans, credit unions, armored cars and related institutions that are insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Company (FDIC).

It was in the 1930’s when the John Dillinger gang also known as The Terror Gang caught the country’s attention wreaking havoc with their daring robberies of twenty-four banks. Since that era the FBI has become the leader of all investigations relating to any assault on the Federal Reserve System.

Dillinger became a folk hero to some when the press ran embellished accounts of his swagger and flamboyant personality, equating him to a then day Tony Soprano figure.

It was the height of the Holiday shopping season last month, when a middle aged woman wearing sweat pants and a dark colored hat walked into a bank and simply handed a teller a note which read “This is a robbery. Smile & act naturally”. She also told the teller that she was armed and wouldn’t hesitate to use her weapon, “so don’t act like a hero”, even though witnesses to the apparent robbery didn’t see a weapon in the woman’s possession, according to the federal criminal complaint.

After her arrest, which took place three days after the alleged robbery, and after being taken into custody, Sonya Clark, who is fifty two years old and works for a moving company also seemingly confessed to robbing a local branch of a TD bank in Boynton Beach late last year, near her residence. The bank that was hit in Fort Lauderdale was also a TD Bank
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Dressed in a green shirt, blue pants, and white sneakers Raymond Young walked into a Great Neck, NY Chase bank branch on Middle Neck Road at 9:30 in the morning brandishing a handgun and “verbally demanded money from a teller,” police said. His trendy ensemble was topped off with a light-colored baseball cap.

What Mr. Young didn’t anticipate when he chose to rob that particular bank was that a Lake Success police officer would happen to be in the bank and witness the entire armed robbery. So when Young fled the bank with an undisclosed amount of cash, he already had the deck stacked against his possibility of escape.

Equipped with eye-witness identification by the officer, the Kings Point police were able to look back at surveillance video that was taken at the time of the holdup as well as having still photos including a direct shot of the perpetrator. They also performed a license plate “read” on the suspected vehicle using special equipment (Automatic number plate recognition, ALPR), which identified the suspect. The information was then released by the Kings Point department to the Nassau County Police and all other local area police agencies along with all photos and details of the heist.

Just after 7 p.m. the surveillance equipment alerted police that the suspect vehicle had entered the village, according to Kings Point Department Commissioner Jack Miller.

Coincidentally, it was a Lake Success police officer that made the actual arrest. Police Sgt. Thomas Alter told the Great Neck Record that the information relayed from the Kings Point Police Department as well as the visual sighting by their own officer was responsible for Mr. Young’s apprehension. His car was noticed by a Lake Success police officer, displaying the identified license plate, at the intersection of the Northern State Parkway and Lakeville Road where he quickly pulled over the alleged thief, arrested him, and took him into custody.

70-year old Raymond Young, from Memphis, Tennessee, was charged with first-degree criminal use of a firearm, and robbery, first-degree. The elderly man was arraigned in First District Court in Hempstead by Judge Eric Bjorneby who ordered him held without bail.

Commissioner Miller crowed to the Great Neck Record, a local newspaper, that Young’s arrest was greatly aided by his department, citing that they have a total of 19 cameras positioned in tactical areas throughout the village as well as at all entrances to the Long Island North Shore town. Kings Point is located on the Great Neck Peninsula in the Town of North Hempstead in Nassau County.

He pointed out that there are 19 cameras of this type in the village, such as the main camera on East Shore Road at the site of the Jewish Center (Chabad), and the one also on East Shore Road near the entrance to the village. He stressed that only a select group of Kings Point officers have total access to these camera in real time, but the department has the ability to always check the recorded videos and view any individuals that have come into or exited the community at any time during the course of each day.

Miller also said that the Village has plans to expand their surveillance system in due course to include a total of 44 license-plate readers at nineteen intersections within the confines of the Village which is a little more than three square miles in size. The proposal received worries from civil liberties activists in addition to local residents who were concerned about the cost of the elaborate system. However, this past June, a $1,140,000 bond offering was approved by the village for the expansion of the system.

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A resident of Brooklyn, New York who was at one time listed on the FBI’s 10 most wanted fugitive list was arrested in April in association with another bank robbery. He had just completed a 25-year sentence in Federal prison roughly two weeks prior to this occurrence for his conviction in a rash of more than two dozen bank robberies in the late 1980’s. His primary court appearance in this new case will be on May 15.

John Edward Stevens, 62, of Brooklyn, New York was arrested on April 16, after he entered a TD Bank located on Ramapo Valley Road in Bergen County, Oakland, New Jersey. He was waving a handgun and allowed all the customers to leave the bank, before removing cash from the tellers’ area from multiple cash drawers. Before going for the money, he first displayed a black handgun to one of the bank managers that was sitting at his desk at the time. After gathering up the loot he left on foot and was spotted by police about 20 minutes later in neighboring Waldwick just after 10:30 a.m. Employees of the bank affirmed that the man matching his description captured by the police was indeed the perpetrator. The Oakland Police Department received the 9-1-1 call at 10:03 a.m.

In a search of his “stolen” car, police found a bag displaying the TD bank’s logo filled with approximately $4,000 in cash. They also found a black handgun that was identified by some of the employees as a match for the weapon he was brandishing in the bank, minutes prior to his apprehension.

The arrest was credited to members of both the Waldwick and Ho-Ho-Kus Police at approximately 10:40 a.m.

He is now charged with one count of bank robbery, which if convicted can produce a new sentence of up to 20 more years behind bars.

Stevens was first arrested for bank robbery charges on November 30, 1988 in Ohio. Cincinnati Police found him in a motel along with his girlfriend. He has previously been featured on the hit TV show America’s Most Wanted and is suspected in excess of 25 more bank robberies spanning at least eight states

It seems he was a tad more effective during his prior robberies, which earned him quite a reputation with federal authorities.

According to media reports, during his previous spree, he was acknowledged for mocking police, often boasting that “he is smarter than anyone in law enforcement.” Before his arrest in 1988, Stevens would actually call up police offices and claim that he would never be caught. He was positioned on the FBI’s “Most Wanted” list in that same year and was arrested in Cincinnati around six months after that notorious assignment.

The FBI also has charges pending against him for various offenses, including previous bank robberies. There are also additional charges imminent from several other jurisdictions which include the 10th precinct in Manhattan. In that particular case, Stevens is wanted for a recent carjacking that occurred on April 14, 2013. It is alleged that the car stolen in the New York City carjacking is the same vehicle that Stevens used, and was caught with in this latest robbery.

He is now scheduled to make his first appearance in U.S. District Court at 2 p.m. on Wednesday, in Newark, Jersey.

The press release on this posting can be read in full on the FBI’s Website by clicking here.

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