'Bearded Bandit' sought for 15 bank robbery incidents arrested in Brentwood

Bay City News
Thursday, March 24, 2016
A man known as the "Bearded Bandit" is seen being arrested in Brentwood, Calif. on Wednesday, March 23, 2016.
A man known as the "Bearded Bandit" is seen being arrested in Brentwood, Calif. on Wednesday, March 23, 2016.

BRENTWOOD, Calif. -- Police arrested a serial bank robber dubbed the "Bearded Bandit" who has been connected to 15 different incidents and sought by over a dozen law enforcement agencies in the Bay Area and in other parts of Northern California.

According to police in Concord, one of eight Bay Area cities struck in the spree, the bank robber has stolen more than $24,000 since the first robbery was reported on Feb. 12.

The man has been tied to at least 11 bank robberies, one attempted robbery and three casing incidents, according to the FBI.

Most recently, he was suspected of back-to-back bank robberies in Contra Costa and Solano counties on Monday.

He started at a Chase Bank branch at 3492 Mt. Diablo Blvd. in Lafayette around 3:30 p.m. that day before he was involved in another robbery about an hour later at a Bank of Stockton branch at 230 Main St. in Rio Vista.

The Bearded Bandit's alleged first appearance was a Feb. 12 robbery of a Chase Bank at 3906 Washington Blvd. in Fremont, a city he returned to last Thursday when he robbed a U.S. Bank at 46848 Mission Blvd.

He also was connected to a robbery at a Wells Fargo at 6778 Bernal Ave. in Pleasanton on Thursday.

The Bearded Bandit has often struck banks within the same day, according to a list of connected incidents supplied by the FBI.

He was linked to three separate robberies in Elk Grove, Sacramento and Dixon in one day on March 1, according to the FBI.

On March 4, he cased a U.S. Bank at 905 First St. in Gilroy before robbing a Wells Fargo two blocks away several hours later.

He cased Wells Fargo banks in Watsonville and the unincorporated Monterey County community of Prunedale on March 16 before returning to Gilroy

to rob that U.S. Bank at 905 First St. in Gilroy the same day.

Between then, he robbed a Wells Fargo bank located at 4599 Clayton Road in Concord on March 11 and a U.S. Bank at 4440 Tassajara Road in Dublin on March 15.

In each of the cases, the man tells bank tellers that he wants to cash a check or ask a question before presenting a demand note, according to the FBI.