Police: Man Robbed Bank To Avoid Homelessness

Wednesday, May 14, 2014  |  Updated 5:56 AM CDT
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Police: Man Robbed Bank To Avoid Homelessness

Bandit Tracker

Robert Alan Bennett

A man who allegedly robbed a Northwest Side bank told authorities he did it to avoid becoming homeless.

The Fifth Third Bank that Robert Alan Bennett robbed on May 9 in Albany Park -- located at 4017 W. Lawrence Ave. -- was one he frequented, according to an affidavit filed in U.S. District Court Monday.

Bennett walked in to the bank about 6:35 p.m. and told a teller to be quiet and read the note he was about to slide over, which said to give Bennett $20,000, the criminal complaint said.

The teller refused at first and backed away with their hands up, but Bennett replied, “Open the drawer and give me what you have. Don’t cause me any trouble. I don’t want to hurt you. Today is not my day.”

When the teller started counting the money to give Bennett, he said there wasn’t time for that and eventually took a wad of cash, the complaint said. He allegedly walked out with $3,233.

The next day, the bank used records to identify Bennett after employees reported recognizing him from his previous visits to the branch.

Bennett was arrested on May 10 as he was leaving his girlfriend’s apartment, also in Albany Park, after the FBI conducted an investigation and observed surveillance footage of him from the robbery, the complaint said.

He later told FBI agents that after the robbery, he was headed to a relative’s home to turn himself in, the complaint said.

He said that he robbed the bank because he “didn’t want to be homeless,” and that he chose to rob a bank where people recognized him because if he got caught, “at least I would have a place to sleep.”

Charges have not yet been filed.

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