By Eric Stevick Herald Writer
EVERETT — With one arm in a sling, Todd Kirkpatrick used his feet to roll himself forward in a wheelchair during a Friday court hearing.
The suspected serial bank robber was shot multiple times by a Snohomish County sheriff’s deputy after a Sept. 25 holdup in Stanwood. The Anacortes man spent more than three weeks in a Seattle hospital.
On Thursday, Kirkpatrick, 54, was deemed well enough to be booked into the Snohomish County Jail.
During a brief hearing, an Everett District Court judge followed a prosecutor’s recommendation and set bail at $500,000.
Investigators say Kirkpatrick, a developer who had fallen on hard financial times, likely is the “Phony Pony Bandit.” The nickname was coined by police to describe a prolific hold-up man wanted in connection with armed bank robberies in three counties since July, according to a search warrant. That robber allegedly has hit banks in Bellingham, Mount Vernon and La Conner.
In Snohomish County, Kirkpatrick’s accused of pointing a handgun toward at least one KeyBank teller and demanding money.
A teller told police that when the suspect spotted the deputy’s patrol car outside the bank, he cursed and walked over to the manager’s desk. He appeared to try to hide behind a wall inside the bank for a few seconds, court papers said.
The deputy was in the area specifically to check on the bank because of recent bank robberies. He walked toward the bank and confronted the robber as he walked out of the building, police wrote. The deputy advised a dispatcher that the armed suspect was running toward the Haggen grocery store across the street.
Witnesses reported seeing the robber running outside the bank, through the drive-thru and toward the grocery store. The deputy was chasing after the suspect and yelling for the man to get on the ground. Witnesses reported seeing the deputy fire at the suspect, the search warrant said.
Kirkpatrick was hit multiple times.
Deputies found in his front pants pocket the exact amount of cash that was stolen from the bank, court papers said.
They also took from him a portable police scanner outfitted with an earpiece.
Witnesses told police that the suspect carried a pistol in his hand until just before he was apprehended. Deputies recovered a handgun that allegedly was used by the defendant, court papers said.
Eric Stevick: 425-339-3446, firstname.lastname@example.org