FBI: 2 captured after bank robbery spree in north Houston


by KHOU.com staff & Kevin Reece / KHOU 11 News


Posted on September 20, 2012 at 11:33 AM

Updated Thursday, Sep 20 at 7:00 PM

HOUSTON – Two persistent bank robbery suspects were in custody Thursday after hitting several banks in north Houston over the last two days, according to the FBI.

The pair tried to rob the Wells Fargo Bank in the 12800 block of the North Freeway Thursday around 7:30 a.m. Authorities said they sent a note demanding money through the drive-thru, but when that did not work; they left and headed to another bank.

They tried again at the Capital One Bank in the 100 block of Greens Road shortly after 9 a.m.

Again, they handed over a note demanding cash. The teller turned over an undisclosed amount of money and the suspects fled the scene, but one did not get very far.

Authorities caught him behind a Knights Inn in the 12500 block of the North Freeway shortly after the robbery. Once in custody, he confessed to robbing the Chase Bank in the 200 block of Greens Road a day earlier.

In that case, the robber walked into the branch at 9:09 a.m. and handed the teller a threatening note specifically asking for $ 1,000. The teller gave the suspect some cash and he fled in an older model baby blue Lincoln with a rag top.

His alleged partner in crime was tracked down Thursday afternoon.

They are part of a disturbing trend here. Houston typically averages between 101 and 177 bank robberies a year. This year, we'd already had 119 by August 31.

The FBI says that bank robbers -- usually a mix of drug users, gang members, and people with prior criminal convictions -- are getting less and less cash in robberies, sometimes only a few hundred bucks.

Faced with smaller scores, they’re hitting more banks.

Crime Stoppers has launched a campaign to catch the Top 10 bank robbers in Houston by putting their pictures online and on TV, they remind us that most are caught with help from the public.

"We want to bring some attention, shed some light on what we see as a crime problem that quite frankly from my perspective we’re seeing a spike or a trend that is alarming and needs to be addressed," said Special Agent in Charge Steve Morris with the Houston FBI.

Tips leading to an arrest can score you $5,000 from Crime Stoppers. Just call 713-222-TIPS (8477) or submit your tips online.