FBI investigating rash of robberies in KC metro area

Sunday, October 29, 2006

The Associated Press

KANSAS CITY, Mo.-- Police and the FBI are investigating 13 bank robberies in the Kansas City metropolitan area since Sept. 1, attributing some of them to one gang and others to a single perpetrator.

The 13 robberies in about two months are unusual because Kansas City generally has about 35 bank robberies in a year, FBI spokesman Jeff Lanza said.

Lanza said officials believe three men and one woman are responsible for some of the robberies, including one Friday at the National Bank of Kansas City in Platte City.

In that crime, a man entered the bank and passed a note to a teller demanding money. After he got the money, he fled to a waiting sedan.

That holdup has been linked to four others, Lanza said -- robberies at Bank Midwest in Shawnee, Kan., on Sept. 15; the Enterprise Bank and Trust in North Kansas City and the U.S. Bank in St. Joseph, both on Oct. 10; and the UMB Bank in Overland Park, Kan., on Oct. 20.

The gang has been dubbed the "Band-Aid Robbers" because one suspect often wears a bandage on his left cheek.

In an unrelated robbery Friday, two men robbed the First Federal Bank in North Kansas City. While one man was in the lobby, the second robber collected the money behind the counter, Lanza said. They escaped in a black Lexus that had been stolen from a car dealership. The car was recovered about two blocks from the bank.

A second cluster of holdups has been tied to a single robber, described by authorities as a white man, 25 to 35 years old, about 6 feet 5 inches tall and weighing about 220 pounds.

Lanza said the man's crimes apparently started Aug. 24 at the UMB Bank in Blue Springs. He then robbed the First Federal Bank in Kansas City on Sept. 21 and again on Oct. 5, and then on Thursday robbed the M&I Bank in Independence.

Information from: The Kansas City Star, http://www.kcstar.com

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