Armed robber escapes with undisclosed amount from nearby bank

By Tom Collins
Arizona Daily Wildcat
November 5, 1996

A campus-area bank was the site of an armed robbery yesterday afternoon.

Arizona State Savings and Credit Union, 901 E. University Blvd., was robbed at 12:43 p.m., according to the Tucson Police Department.

The suspect is a white, thin man, 6 feet tall and between 18 and 24 years old. He was carrying a backpack and wearing dark clothing and a sailor hat, police said.

After the robbery, the man walked around the west side of the building before heading north, police said.

The case is under investigation as an armed robbery, but police said there was no indication of what kind of weapon was used, or if one was used at all.

"Implying a weapon is the same as displaying a weapon," said Sgt. Eugene Mejia, a TPD spokesman. He said a robber would still be prosecuted for armed robbery.

Police would not release the amount of money taken in the robbery. Detectives are following up on the case, police said.

Mejia said the FBI is assisting TPD with the investigation.

Since most banks have surveillance equipment, Mejia said, it is not difficult to establish a suspect. He said arrests are made in between 80 percent to 90 percent of bank robbery cases.

Arizona State Savings was closed for about an hour while police investigated the crime. The bank re-opened at about 1:45 p.m.

Employees of the bank would not comment on the robbery.

Many bank robbers are repeat offenders and are therefore easier to catch, Mejia said. He said through last week, there had been 33 bank robberies in Tucson this year, up from 20 at the same time last year.