Scottsdale, Arizona – In December of 2012, an alleged bank robber was arrested after locking bank employees in a vault, fleeing on a bicycle, driving off in a rented U-Haul truck, and ultimately trying to carjack drivers while fleeing on foot.
The fiasco began around 10 am on a Friday when the 45-year-old suspect attempted to rob a National Bank located at the intersection of Scottsdale Road and Mayo Boulevard. The suspect had forced the bank's employees into the bank's vault before fleeing from the scene on a bicycle.
According to Police Sergeant Steve Martos, "He ultimately demanded the employees remain in the vault." Martos said the suspect locked them (the employees) in the vault, and then exited the bank with a certain amount of money.
The police said that once the suspect was outside of the bank, he jumped on his bicycle and went a short distance to where he had parked a U-Haul truck. The suspect then loaded his bicycle onto the truck and drove off.
As the 45-year-old suspect headed east on Frank Lloyd Wright Boulevard approaching Hayden, he crashed the U-Haul truck where he hit at least two other vehicles.
When the responding officers tried to arrest the suspect, he successfully dodged them by jumping out of the U-Haul and running into the road where he attempted to carjack other vehicles. Battalion Chief Mark Debruyckere said, "It dawned on me this guy was trying to carjack cars, and I just couldn't let him do that because there might be kids in the cars, and I couldn't let him get away from the scene."
After the suspect stopped trying to carjack vehicles he ran into a nearby car wash, which is where the police officers caught up with him and used a taser to subdue him and took him into custody. According to Police Sergeant Steve Martos, the suspect fits the same MO and the same description as an identical robbery that took place at the same bank the month before.
Under Section 13-1901 of the Arizona Revised Statutes, "force" is defined as any physical act directed against someone as a means for gaining control, and "threat" means a verbal or physical menace of imminent physical injury to the victim.
In many cases bank robberies are "armed robberies." In Arizona, under § 13-1904, when a person uses or threatens to use a deadly weapon or another dangerous weapon or even a simulated deadly weapon when committing robbery, the offense is prosecuted as a Class 2 felony offense.
According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), in 2009 alone there was more than $45 million dollars stolen and approximately 140 people injured in nearly 6,000 robberies of financial institutions nationwide. Since the 1930s, the FBI has played a major role in bank robbery investigations ever since John Dillinger and his gang were robbing banks and becoming a household name. By 1934, robbing a national bank became a federal crime, as well as robbing any state member bank of the Federal Reserve.
If you are facing any form of state or federal robbery charges, we urge you to contact former prosecutor Randall J. Craig. As a legal analyst on several major networks, he is admitted to practice in the State Bar of Arizona and the United States Federal Court for the District of Arizona. Contact the firm today to schedule your confidential and free consultation with our lead attorney, Randall J. Craig if you are facing robbery charges in the greater Scottsdale area.