The story of the Geezer Bandit, known across San Diego for his alleged connection to at least 11 bank robberies over the last year, ranks up there with some of the most infamous criminals in U.S. history, according to one legal expert.
The bank robbery suspect hands the teller a demand note, according to FBI agents tracking his crimes, and then receives large amounts of cash sometimes visible on surveillance cameras.
He has evaded authorities in a string of local robberies that have occurred since August 2009 in a path stretching from North County to downtown San Diego. His most recent occurred in June, agents say, at a Temecula bank.
In all the coverage of his crimes -- from ABC to Yahoo -- a Facebook page popped up with close to 1500 fans. Some want to hear from the man himself while others offer prayers and support.
In an interview with the LA Times, Jon Gould, director of the Center for Justice, Law and Society at George Mason University compared the frenzy surrounding Geezer to tales of Bonnie and Clyde, Dillinger, Pretty Boy Floyd, D.B. Cooper and more.
Gould even criticized the FBI for using nicknames to publicize wanted bank robbers, making them more attractive as cult heroes.
San Diegans have seen one effect of all the hype - a copycat robbery just days after the most recent Geezer sighting.
With all of the interest, you'd think someone would've spotted the Geezer and called in for the $16,000 reward offered.
Anyone with information concerning the “Geezer Bandit” is asked to contact the FBI at telephone number (858) 565-1255, San Diego Sheriff’s Department at (858) 565-5200, San Diego Police Department at (619) 531-2299, or Crime Stoppers at (888) 580-8477.