Chicago police have arrested the man they suspect of being the “Wicker Park Bandit,” a robber wanted for sticking up as many as 10 banks on the North Side, CBS 2 reports.
Here is the CBS 2 story:
A man suspected of being the so-called “Wicker Park Bandit,” wanted for robbing as many as 10 banks on the North Side, has been arrested and ordered held without bail.
As CBS 2’s Mike Parker reports, three weeks ago the suspect robbed the North Community Bank branch at 448 N. Wells St. in the River North neighborhood.
An eyewitness saw the man drive off in a maroon SUV with temporary plates. The FBI said Chicago Police impounded a vehicle matching that description a few days later, after a traffic stop and drug arrest.
The suspect, 27-year-old Simeon Harris, was arrested outside the Cambridge Manor low-income housing high-rise at 2631 S. Indiana Av., where he lived with his mother. Harris reportedly surrendered without incident.
So far, he has only been charged with the bank robbery in River North, but is suspected in at least 9 other robberies:
• A Dec. 13 robbery at the Chase Bank branch at 1700 N. Wells St.;
• a Dec. 20 robbery at the North Community Bank branch at 2335 N. Clark St.;
• a Dec. 22 robbery at the PNC Bank branch at 4440 N. Broadway;
• a Dec. 30 robbery at the Chase Bank branch at 1350 N. Wells St.;
• a Jan. 6 robbery at the North Community Bank branch at 1555 N. Damen Av.;
• a Jan. 6 robbery at the North Community Bank branch at 1600 W. Chicago Av.;
• a Jan. 9 robbery at the Chase Bank branch at 1200 N. State Pkwy.;
• and a Jan. 21 robbery at the Chase Bank branch, at 71 W. Chicago Av.;
“He was at large, and robbing banks, for about seven weeks before we got a lead to his identity,” FBI spokesman Ross Rice said.
The FBI’s Bandit Tracker website has a parade of surveillance photos of a bank robber they believe to be Harris during his crime spree. The latest is emblazoned with the word “captured” in red.
Since the second week in December, Harris is believed to have robbed as many as 10 banks, mostly in Wicker Park and in surrounding neighborhoods.
“Hence, he was given the moniker, the Wicker Park Bandit,” Rice said.
In each of the heists, the robber would walk up to tellers and hand over a note demanding money. He would imply that he was armed, but an actual weapon was never shown.
Harris faces charges in one robbery so far, and the FBI is gathering evidence in the other robberies.
“Video, eyewitness identifications, physical evidence; there’s a number of things that we have to do,” Rice said. “Knowing someone committed a crime and being able to prove it in court are two different things.”
Even if he’s convicted only in the robbery in in the River North neighborhood, Harris could still end up with a sentence of 20 years in federal prison.