EVERETT — He seems to be the repentant bank robber.
Four years ago, James J. Kohlhepp told a motel employee in Marysville he was broke and was going to rob a bank later that day. He was true to his word. He then tearfully turned himself in to Marysville police.
Earlier this week, he called 911 to surrender after allegedly robbing a bank in Everett.
The circumstances were nearly identical, Snohomish County deputy prosecutor Jon Cummings told a judge earlier this week.
Kohlhepp, 46, was sentenced to three years in prison for the Marysville heist. He served his time and finished his community supervision in March, according to state Department of Corrections records.
Before the Marysville robbery in September 2015, he told the inn worker that he’d been off drugs for a couple of days and figured prison would help him stay clean, court records said. When he checked out, he left his property in his motel room, telling the employee he didn’t need it anymore because he was going to prison.
He then walked into a Bank of America branch on State Avenue and handed a teller a note that said “Give me all your money or else.” Police hadn’t realized he was the suspect when they arrived and were setting up containment. His clothing didn’t match initial descriptions provided over the police radio. They thought he might be a witness.
Kohlhepp then held up his hands and approached an officer, saying: “I’m the guy that just robbed the bank. The money is in my pocket.”
That’s when he began to cry and told officers he needed help.
Police recovered $2,007. Bank employees confirmed he was the man who walked off with the money.
Late Tuesday morning, the Chase Bank on Colby Avenue was robbed. A suspect walked up to the check-writing counter and wrote “give me all your money!!!” on a deposit slip before handing it to a teller. The incident was recorded by video cameras.
That afternoon, according to police reports, Kohlhepp called 911 and said he wanted to turn himself in for robbing a bank earlier in the day.
Eric Stevick: 425-339-3446; firstname.lastname@example.org.