Months later, Monroe bank robber still at large

MONROE — Monroe police Detective Spencer Robinson ran down lead after lead after lead.

Each led him to a dead end.

Robinson isn’t giving up on solving the Feb. 3, 2009 bank robbery that terrorized four Key Bank employees in Monroe.

The robber waited for them before 8 a.m., threatened each with a silver handgun and forced them into a vault. They were tied up and made to go down on their knees, execution style.

“Every single one of them had the fear that ‘this is it,’” Robinson said. “Thankfully no one was hurt. It could have gone very bad.”

In some ways, the robber seemed polished.

The man in a dark hooded sweatshirt kept his face averted from surveillance cameras.

He came prepared with zip ties to bind his victims.

He was gone from the bank at 200 Main St. in less than 15 minutes.

Without a clear image of the man’s face, Robinson is focusing on the suspect’s feet: specifically his white and black-lined mid-top sports shoes. He doesn’t know the brand, but believes the style is distinctive enough that someone might recognize the shoes.

Robinson hopes witnesses will recall something they saw. Perhaps, he said, an acquaintance will remember the shoes or the robber going on a spending spree in the days after the heist.

Police nearly nabbed him on the day of the robbery, Robinson said.

Employees were able to wriggle free. One dialed 911, but the phone service from the bank required dialing a 9 to get an outside line and the call didn’t go through.

A later attempt was successful.

Police were at the bank within two minutes of the call, Robinson. The robber stole the keys to one of the workers’ cars and slipped away, driving down a back alley as police arrived.

The car was found around 9:15 a.m. that day, abandoned on a rural stretch of Tualco Loop Road about one mile south of Monroe.

Police believe someone likely was waiting for him in a second car.

“He got to the bank somehow,” Monroe police spokeswoman Debbie Willis said. “It is pretty reasonable to think there is someone else who helped by giving him a ride.”

Police describe the suspect as a Hispanic man, between 5-foot-6 and 5-foot-8. They estimate his weight at 125 pounds and say he wore a black hoodie, jeans and white tennis shoes.

Anyone with information can call Monroe police at 360-794-6300 or leave an anonymous tip at 360-863-4600.

Eric Stevick: 425-339-3446,

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