FBI seeks 'Dynomite Bandit,' who robs banks with fake bomb - New York News

FBI seeks 'Dynomite Bandit,' who robs banks with fake bomb

Posted: Updated:
Dynomite Bandit Dynomite Bandit
Surveillance picture from golf course Surveillance picture from golf course
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -

The FBI is releasing new information about a thief targeting valley banks with what appears to be explosives -- but aren't.

The explosive devices he plants have all been fake, but agents want to catch him before he escalates and starts using real explosives to rob banks.

Surveillance video has captured the Dynomite Bandit outside of Estancia Golf Community. Cameras caught him walking around just before he tried to rob a nearby Chase Bank on January 2.

He left the simulated explosive device inside the ATM lobby in a check writing stand. But he never got a chance to make any threats to the bank -- because Estancia Golf club workers thought he looked suspicious and confronted him.

"In this particular manner in the Phoenix area this is rather unique," says FBI Special Agent Mark Hoffman.

The Dynomite Bandit has hit three banks in the valley since July. Agents say in two robberies he drilled a hole in the roof of the bank after business hours, then put a fake explosive device inside.

The next morning he waits for the bank to open and calls their employees, demanding money and threatening to blow up the bank if his demands weren't met.

"They look very realistic. They are inert, there are no explosive parts in it, even the bomb techs, the professionals they look at that they believe that it is an actual explosive device," says Agent Hoffman.

Agents say this guy operates a lot like another bank robber called the Thou Shalt Not Kill Bandit. But there's one main difference that lead agents to think it's different guys.

"There are differences in height, weight that make us think that the individuals depicted are not one in the same."

Hoffman said it's believed the suspect spent a week or more conducting extensive surveillance of each bank, locating exits and studying when employees arrive and leave.

Take a look at the FBI sketch -- the suspect is wearing an ear piece. Agents say that indicates he could be working with someone or listening to police scanners.

They also believe he may have a background in military or law enforcement.

FBI officials said they gave the man the misspelled "Dynomite" nickname because the explosive devices he used were fake. All serial robbers are given a moniker so they stand out with the public, the officials said Friday at a news conference.

Authorities are offering a $15,000 reward for information leading to his arrest and conviction.

Related stories

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • Is NYC the most unhappiest city in America?

    Is NYC the most unhappiest city in America?

    Wednesday, July 23 2014 9:36 AM EDT2014-07-23 13:36:19 GMT
    When researchers in Canada and Harvard University examined the results of a survey that asked “In general, how satisfied are you with your life?” they found that New York City is the unhappiest city in the country. The data compiled by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that Pittsburgh, Louisville, Milwaukee and Detroit round out the list.
    When researchers in Canada and Harvard University examined the results of a survey that asked “In general, how satisfied are you with your life?” they found that New York City is the unhappiest city in the country. The data compiled by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that Pittsburgh, Louisville, Milwaukee and Detroit round out the list.
  • Two babies get herpes during ritual circumcision

    Two babies get herpes during ritual circumcision

    Wednesday, July 23 2014 9:19 AM EDT2014-07-23 13:19:03 GMT
    The New York City Department of Health has issued an alert after two babies were diagnosed with neonatal herpes this month after undergoing a ritual Jewish circumcision called metzitzah b'peh.  In this type of circumcision the mohel sucks blood directly from the infant's cut penis.  The infants need to be hospitalized and treated with intravenous acyclovir.
    The New York City Department of Health has issued an alert after two babies were diagnosed with neonatal herpes this month after undergoing a ritual Jewish circumcision called metzitzah b'peh.  In this type of circumcision the mohel sucks blood directly from the infant's cut penis.  The infants need to be hospitalized and treated with intravenous acyclovir.
  • Blaze engulfs commercial building in NJ

    Blaze engulfs commercial building in NJ

    Wednesday, July 23 2014 8:07 AM EDT2014-07-23 12:07:25 GMT
    A two-alarm fire broke out in a commercial building in New Jersey on Tuesday. The fire erupted on Bergen Boulevard and 12th Street in Palisades Park. SkyFoxHD was over the scene as heavy smoke poured out from the building. It is not clear what sparked the fire. No injuries were reported.
    A two-alarm fire broke out in a commercial building in New Jersey on Tuesday. The fire erupted on Bergen Boulevard and 12th Street in Palisades Park. SkyFoxHD was over the scene as heavy smoke poured out from the building. It is not clear what sparked the fire. No injuries were reported.

Powered by WorldNow
Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices