I’m not in the business of advocating robbing a bank, but I think everyone has sat and day dreamed, at one point or another, about how it would go down if they were to become a criminal mastermind.
You’d think about how you’d conceal your identity, how you’d demand the money and how you’d manage to get away from the scene before law enforcement catches up with you.
It’s clear one man should’ve thought a little bit harder about the first point after he was arrested trying to rob a bank with a note that conveniently had his name and address on it.
Michael Harrell didn’t think his masterplan through before he walked into a US Bank in Cleveland, Ohio, on Monday and handed over a note demanding money.
CCTV footage shows the 54-year-old slipping a piece of paper through the glass panel, which read ‘this is a bank robbery, don’t get nobody hurt,’ according to the FBI.
However, the note was written on a document Harrell had used at the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles, which had his name and address emblazoned on it.
The bank worker handed him $206 (£169), before waiting for him to leave and calling the police.
Unsurprisingly, officers were able to identify Harrell almost immediately, after he failed to conceal his identity.
The robber, who opted against donning a mask, wore a black t-shirt with a baseball cap, and was a regular customer at the bank.
As reported by the Mirror, sergeant Jennifer Ciaccia, spokeswoman for the Cleveland Division of Police said:
We’ve had individuals drop things on the way out the door that they didn’t intend to obviously.
We’ve had individuals drop cell phones that have all their identifying information in it.
When you present a note that has your name already on it and address, it helps law enforcement tremendously.
There’s a lesson to be learned here. You probably shouldn’t rob a bank but if you absolutely need to, then you definitely shouldn’t hand over a note which reveals your identity and your address.
Brazen but ill-conceived bank robberies aren’t new to the US. One fella in Wisconsin decided to rob a bank because he wanted to ‘try something new.’
Xengxai Yang, 19, was arrested in connection with a robbery at Community First Credit Union in Outagamie County in March.
According to the criminal complaint, a member of staff at the bank described the robber as a person wearing a mask and black clothing, holding a long gun.
After being apprehended by police, Yang couldn’t provide any reason for the robbery except ‘I decided to do something new today, so I robbed a bank,’ the complaint states.
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Emma Rosemurgey is an NCTJ trained Journalist at UNILAD. She graduated from the University of Central Lancashire in Preston and started her career in regional newspapers before joining the LADbible Group team in 2017.