For the fifth time in 11 weeks, the PT Cruiser bandit has robbed a financial institution in the Santa Clarita Valley – which works out roughly to a bank robbed every other week on average.
No gun, no shots, no violence – just a lone male in his 50’s wearing a casual button shirt and a hat with a note.
The latest place hit was the Wescom Credit Union on Pico Canyon Road at The Old Road in Stevenson Ranch about 6 p.m. Monday.
“We received a call at a quarter to six,” Lt. Doug Mohrhoff of the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station told The Signal Tuesday morning.
“This was for a robbery at the Wescom Credit Union on the 24900 block of Pico Canyon Road,” he said.
“The suspect was a lone male who does match the description of the suspect in the previous robberies,” Mohrhoff said. “He is described as a white male in his 50’s wearing a hat and a gray plaid button-up shirt.”
As in the other four robberies since early June, the man hands the teller a note and leaves calmly, quietly and eluding capture each time.
On at least two of the previous robberies, a PT Cruiser was spotted near the targeted bank at the time of the robbery.
No shots were reported fired and no one reportedly hurt in any of the robberies including the one Monday.
A joint task force of law enforcement officers including the FBI and detectives with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department are investigating.
Two weeks ago, on Aug. 10, a man wearing a fedora robbed the California Credit Union on Magic Mountain Parkway shortly after 5 p.m., the same time of day as two of three other SCV banks robbed since June.
“They’re saying it was the same guy,” Sgt. Niels Gittisarn, of the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station, told The Signal.
A description of the Aug. 10 bank robber was compared to other banks hit – two in Newhall and one in Valencia. The robber was described as wearing tan-colored shorts, a Hawaiian shirt and a fedora.
On July 25, about 5:15 p.m., a lone male entered the Logix Valencia Promenade bank branch on McBean Parkway near Magic Mountain Parkway and held up the bank.
Deputies dispatched to the scene of the July robbery were also given a description of a white PT Cruiser.
“It looks like we’re dealing with the same guy,” Becerra said at the time, referring to two previous bank robberies in Newhall in June.
FBI agents continue to probe two bank robberies in Newhall in June, having released a photo of the suspect wanted for the first of what is now believed to be three local bank robberies.
The photo first appeared on the FBI-sanctioned website – LAbankrobbers.org – which is run by the FBI’s bank robbery coordinator.
The suspect was captured by surveillance camera wearing a white or beige baseball cap, sunglasses and a dark blue long-sleeved shirt.
On June 12, shortly before 3 p.m., a lone male walked into the bank branch of Wells Fargo near the intersection of Lyons Avenue and Wiley Canyon Road and gave a note to a teller demanding money and indicating he had a gun, Miller said at the time.
Bank robbery investigators including FBI agents and detectives with the Major Crimes Bureau called in to investigate the robbery were called back to the SCV June 20 for a second similar robbery at the Chase Bank in Newhall.
In that robbery, like the one on June 12, a lone male walked into the Chase Bank branch on Lyons Avenue at Apple Street shortly after 5 p.m. and walked out with an undisclosed amount of money, having warned a teller he had a gun although no gun was seen.
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