FBI Searching for “Sleeves Bandit”

Man Wanted for 15 Robberies, Including Two in SB Area

The FBI and law enforcement agencies throughout California are seeking the public’s help in the effort to indentify and apprehend the so-called “Sleeves Bandit,” a man wanted for robbing at least 15 banks throughout the state, including three in the Santa Barbara area. During robberies, the man often wears a long undershirt, the sleeves of which make his arms look like they are covered in tattoos.

Sleeves Bandit

According to a statement issued by the FBI, the Sleeves Bandit often robs banks near closing time. He steps into the bank, reveals a handgun and orders customers to the floor before taking money from multiple tellers. Witnesses describe the man as being in his mid-50s, having short white or gray hair, being between 5-foot-10-inces and 6 feet tall, and weighing between 180 and 200 lbs. During robberies, he wears sunglasses and a mask – initially a ski mask but more recently something that the FBI release termed “a mesh, mosquito-type or beekeeper netting.”

The robberies occurred between November 26, 2008, and March 21, 2009. On the last date, he robbed a Wescom Credit Union franchise in Santa Barbara. On January 16, 2009, he robbed two Goleta banks: the Los Padres Bank at 97 N. Fairview Ave and the Santa Barbara Bank & Trust in the Camino Real Marketplace.

Released by the FBI alongside the statement was a collection of surveillance photos of the man. Authorities request that anyone with information about this man should call the FBI at 1 (888) CANT HIDE (or 1 (888) 226-8443). Reward money is being offered in exchange for valuable information.


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