Stop Thief!

The alleged State Street Bandit was apprehended this week while
using free Internet service at the downtown Santa Barbara Public
Library. Believed by authorities to be responsible for four
downtown bank robberies since December 2005, Brent Poort was
arrested early Saturday afternoon after investigators received a
tip from a federal probation officer with knowledge of the case.
Poort’s distinctive garb during the stick-ups – a black ski parka,
black mask, and black handgun – helped authorities connect the tip
to the recent rash of robberies. Poort, 33, was released last year
from a Texas prison after serving six-and-a-half years for bank
robberies there; he had reportedly moved to the area to be close to
family in Ventura. Charged with four counts of armed robbery, Poort
is being held on $1 million bail and faces a possible life
sentence.

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