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Theft Suspect Returns, Barely Eludes Police

SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

Returning to the scene of a crime turned out to be a bad move Thursday for a bank-robbery suspect who nearly stumbled into police detectives as he apparently tried to retrieve a trash bag full of cash that had been dumped in La Palma the day before.

Police say the suspect was one of three armed men who stole a large sum of cash from the California Bank & Trust in La Palma on Wednesday.

The men apparently got lost as they fled the bank on Orangethorpe Avenue in a stolen car. They abandoned the vehicle a few blocks from their parked getaway car, and ended up having to drop the large trash bag full of bills because it was too heavy to tote around on foot, said La Palma Sgt. Mark Yokoyama.

One of them apparently returned to search for the money Thursday morning, and nearly ran into two detectives who were there examining the scene. The suspect managed to run away, but police were able to detain the woman who had driven him there.

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As of Thursday afternoon, police had not yet arrested the suspects, but Yokoyama said investigators are optimistic that the woman will lead them to their whereabouts. Police also believe the men were involved in a similar bank robbery in Fullerton a month ago.

Yokoyama said the trio’s apparent mistakes were good for some chuckles around the police station.

“It’s just one of those things,” he said. “We get lucky every so often.”


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