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Bank robbery suspect surrenders after police chase

September 15, 2011 |  2:29 pm

Bank robbery suspect surrenders

A bank robbery suspect believed to be the "Triple Threat Bandit" surrendered Thursday afternoon after leading police on an hourlong high-speed chase through Los Angeles and Orange counties.

The man allegedly robbed a Banco Popular in Fullerton about 1 p.m., before getting into a maroon sport utility vehicle and fleeing on the 91 Freeway.

"He gave over a note demanding money at the Banco Popular," said Fullerton Police Sgt. Andrew Goodrich said. "He was on Euclid north of 91 when one of our officers spotted him, tried to stop him and he was having none of it."

Goodrich said the bank robber tossed money from the Suburban while traveling on the 91 and 110 freeways.

"Our officers are now recovering the evidence." Goodrich said.

The man was eventually captured after surrendering to California Highway Patrol officers on the 105 Freeway in Hawthorne just after 2 p.m.

Authorities believe he may also be responsible for a string of three bank robberies in Orange County last month that all occurred within two hours.

The Triple Threat Bandit hit the Orange County Credit Union in Fullerton, the Union Yes Federal Credit Union in Orange and the U.S. Bank in Buena Park all on the same day last month, according to the FBI.

FBI spokeswoman Laura Eimiller said the rare string of bank robberies in a short period of time was "clearly an indication of desperation."

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-- Richard Winton

Photo: The bank robbery suspect surrendered shortly after 2 p.m. The chase and arrest were aired live on KTLA-TV (Channel 5). Credit: Kimi Yoshino / Los Angeles Times

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