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Police hunt for 'Desperate Bandit' in five bank robberies

Federal and local authorities are searching for a man suspected of robbing five banks in recent weeks across Southern California.

The Desperate Bandit, as he is known because he hands demand notes to tellers saying he is desperate, held up a U.S. Bank in Placentia on Friday. He stole about $1,000.

“He just walked in and presented a note,” said Sgt. Brian Yamaguchi with Placentia police. “He said he was armed, but no weapon was seen.”

The incident happened at about 1:30 p.m. at 201 E. Yorba Linda Blvd, Yamaguchi said.

Previous robberies included Chino on Aug. 8, Anaheim Hills on Sept. 5 and Tustin and Corona, both on Sept. 14. Police estimate the suspect has stolen close to $10,000 total.

“We have a number of investigators working with the FBI and with other agencies on this case,” Yamaguchi said.

The suspect was described as a white man in his 40s. He was wearing a red T-shirt that said in white letters, “The Red Zone,” a white baseball hat and tan shorts.

He fled in a white, four-door Toyota Corolla with a factory spoiler. The car had paper plates with a red background and white lettering.


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