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Bank robberies up as year ends

<p>Wanted in connection with eight bank robberies, the “P.J. Bandit” -- sonamed because of the puffy jacket he wears -- is the latest to targetarea banks, which are again seeing an end-of-year surge in heists.</p>

Wanted in connection with eight bank robberies, the “P.J. Bandit” -- so named because of the puffy jacket he wears -- is the latest to target area banks, which are again seeing an end-of-year surge in heists.

There were 19 stick-ups in the Boston area in the first 16 days of December, including the last two of the bandit’s alleged robberies this fall.

Compare that to just 137 through the first 334 days of the year and a shift is evident.

FBI spokeswoman Gail Marcinkiewicz said that while some would point to tough times around the holidays as a cause for the uptick, most suspects are eager to satisfy a fix.

“We really see a strong correlation between drugs and bank robberies,” Marcinkiewicz said. “They are serial robbers and continue until they are stopped. It does impact the numbers.”

There were seven bank robberies in Boston alone during a one-week span earlier this month. The P.J. Bandit allegedly pulled one off, and two women were arrested after sticking up a Sovereign Bank in Brighton on Tuesday.

 
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