Bank robbers appear to have become more brazen in New York City in recent weeks, with at least three having made multiple attempts each over the course of a few days.
Surveillance cameras have captured the confrontations and the NYPD has released images or video clips of the suspects, asking for the public’s assistance. That has not stopped the bandits from striking, all in the afternoon hours. In each case, the assailant walks up to a teller and passes a note demanding money, police said, then walks away. No weapon was shown in any of the robberies, police said.
In the latest incidents, the same man is believed to have robbed two Chase branches in Queens.
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The first robbery happened on Nov. 23 in Flushing, when the man entered the branch at 196-03 Northern Blvd. at about 2 p.m. The other incident happened on Nov. 30 in Jamaica, when police say the same man walked into a location at 184-01 Hillside Ave., at about 3 p.m. He fled in a black Lincoln Town Car, authorities said. Each time, the teller handed the man money, though police would not say how much.
Police are still searching for the suspect, who is described as about 6 foot 4 and 200 pounds, and was last seen wearing a black puffy coat and jeans.
The incidents followed two bank robberies in Manhattan and one unsuccessful attempt in Brooklyn, all by another suspect, between Nov. 23 and 28, authorities said. Police say that man, clad in a black and red puffy coat, got away with a combined $2,000, hopping over a teller’s counter and snatching a cash box in one of the robberies. He is still being sought.
In late October, police arrested a man on the Upper East Side after unsuccessfully trying to rob a bank, minutes after having just robbed another one, the New York Post reported. John Gregg, 39, was turned away by a teller at a Citibank on East 82nd Street after having passed a note demanding money. He had just gotten away with $720 from a Ridgewood Savings Bank on East 74th Street a few minutes before, after passing a similar note, the paper reported.
NYPD detectives are also on the lookout for a suspect who they say robbed a Valley National Bank in Flushing on Nov. 28, at about 1:15 p.m. He also made off with an unspecified amount, and is described as 55 to 60 years old, 5-foot 2 and 220 pounds. He has white hair and a white beard, and was last seen wearing a blue and gray baseball cap, blue and gray jacket, jeans and tan boots.
Anyone with information about these incidents should call the NYPD's Crime Stoppers Hotline at 800-577-8477, or for Spanish 888-577-4782. The public can also submit their tips at the Crime Stoppers website at nypdcrimestoppers.com or by texting to 274637, then entering TIP577. All calls are confidential.