Suspected serial bank robber strikes again, this time in Grass Valley |

Suspected serial bank robber strikes again, this time in Grass Valley

Liz Kellar
Sun News Service
Courtesy PhotoHere's a shot of the alleged bank robber outside the Bank of the West branch Wednesday.

GRASS VALLEY, Calif. and#8212; The man suspected of robbing three branches of Bank of the West in the region struck again Wednesday afternoon.

The alleged serial bank robber hit the Taylorville Road branch just after 4 p.m., said Grass Valley Police Capt. Rex Marks.

The same man, described as wearing a brown fedora and with a reddish-brown goatee, has been linked to a December robbery of the same branch and at two other Bank of the West branches, in South Lake Tahoe and Kings Beach.

and#8220;It was the same description,and#8221; Marks said. and#8220;He displayed a handgun, demanded money and the teller complied.and#8221;

The robber possibly left in a gold-colored vehicle that was seen heading southbound. A vehicle was stopped at about 5 p.m. on Highway 49 and Joeger Road, but the occupant was not the suspect, Marks said.

and#8220;I want to stress that nobody was injured,and#8221; Marks said, adding that anyone who sees the suspect should call 911 rather than attempt to apprehend him.

The FBI has posted a $1,000 reward for tips leading to the capture of the serial bank robber.

On Dec. 22, 2009, a man robbed the Bank of the West on Taylorville Road just after noon. In a Feb. 18 robbery, a man robbed the Bank of the West branch in Lake Tahoe. And on March 8, a man robbed the Bank of the West branch in Kings Beach.

In each heist, the man wore a brown fedora, dark sunglasses and a fake beard.

Agents from the FBI’s Sacramento field office described the robber as a white man with a fake goatee who is about 40 to 50 years old, with gray or salt-and-pepper hair and about 5-foot-9 to 6 feet tall, with a slim build.

In each of the robberies, he allegedly displayed a handgun and used a black, eco-friendly bag commonly found at many supermarkets to stash his loot. The bag has straps and unidentified green writing on it.

In all of the robberies, the suspect approached the teller counter and made verbal demands for money. In at least one of the robberies, he made an attempt to disguise his voice by speaking with clenched teeth.

Witness descriptions and surveillance photographs indicate the suspect also wore a light-colored parka or rain jacket with a hood that has dark trim near the zipper and hood, a light-colored mock turtleneck shirt, black pants and black shoes. In two of the robberies, he wore black gloves.

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