While DNA has become an investigator’s best tool to capture criminals in recent years, an armed robbery case reported in Artesia earlier this summer proves that just careful observation can be just as effective.
When masked man walked into a bank branch in Artesia on July 15 and handed a teller a grammatically incorrect note (“Don’t trigger no alarms”), and demanded everything she had in her cash drawer.
The teller complied, but as the bank manager watched the robber walking out of the building with almost $1900 in cash, something tweaked his memory. The robber’s distinctly wobbly walk was eerily similar to that of a customer who had frequented the bank earlier.
Because the teller gave the robber “bait money” and because the manager had a pretty good idea of the suspect’s identity, the perp was soon captured. However, the police uncovered more evidence when they learned that the robber’s girlfriend had quit her job suddenly, paid off the balance of their hotel room bill in cash and then attempted to hide the remaining stash of money behind a box of ice cream cones in a local grocery store.
Police also were told that when the robber accompanied his girlfriend to announce she was quitting her job, he “was sweating and appeared to be in a hurry.”