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Posted on Mon, Aug 15, 2011 : 5:40 p.m.

Police release surveillance video of bank robbery in Ypsilanti Township

By Staff

The Washtenaw County sheriff's department released the above surveillance video from a robbery at Bank of America at 2250 West Michigan Ave.,Ypsilanti Township this morning, the second of 2 robberies in Washtenaw County today.

Police said 3 people entered the Bank of America branch about 10:15 a.m. and jumped the counter, taking money. The robbers then went into the vault and took more money, said Washtenaw County sheriff's department spokesman Derrick Jackson.

The video shows the robbers entering and customers in the bank getting down on the floor as they come in. The robbers vault the counter, and the tellers get down on the floor as well.

The robbers wore masks and gloves, Jackson said. None showed any weapons.


Tom Teague

Tue, Aug 16, 2011 : 7:51 p.m.

Many of the modern security features in banks are intended to protect the customers and tellers and meet the robbers' demands so that they leave quickly. Safeguarding the money -- which is typically insured and replaceable -- is not the highest priority. I have no insight into this particular bank but from experience on a Credit Union Board in the past: It may be that the tellers are accessible so that robbers don't take and harm hostages in the lobby. Armed guards aren't firing on the robbers to avoid injuries from ricochet and to decrease the chance that a robber will turn customers into human shields. Typically, the police don't confront robbers INSIDE the bank to avoid sieges in which hostages are injured.The dye packs go off a reasonable distance from the building to give the staff a chance to lock the doors and prevent a return visit from an angry blue- or red-dyed robber. Bank robbery is not a terribly lucrative profession: The FBI has reported that the average haul from a bank robbery is around $4,000. Split three ways that's not enough to hire an attorney capable of defending against the huge haul of evidence that the FBI is likely to present at trial. I'm really glad no one was injured.

Craig Lounsbury

Tue, Aug 16, 2011 : 5:08 p.m.

I wonder if the guy on the floor at the top of the footage in the corner has gotten up yet?

Life in Ypsi

Tue, Aug 16, 2011 : 4:15 p.m.

It's becoming just as dangerous working at a bank as working at a party store it seems.


Tue, Aug 16, 2011 : 2:52 p.m.

Did anyone notice that there was a woman dressed in white when the robbers came into the bank that appeared to leave? Was she one of them. What happened to her?


Tue, Aug 16, 2011 : 5:01 p.m.

lol, maybe she was driving the get away car? No, I'm kidding. One of the robbers followed her out and then came back in


Tue, Aug 16, 2011 : 1:54 p.m.

Where did the woman in the white go? She walked in right before the robbers did and then walked right back out. They just let her leave?


Tue, Aug 16, 2011 : 10:56 a.m.

I was struck by how long the three thieves were behind the counter, leaving the lobby area unattended. They've thought it through, but they aren't extremely professional.


Tue, Aug 16, 2011 : 1:53 p.m.

I was thinking the same thing. This was definitely a planned heist


Tue, Aug 16, 2011 : 10:33 a.m.

Why we don't take the same security measures they do in Europe, such as security glass between the tellers and the general public? Does anybody else find it odd that gas stations and liquor stores have better security measures in place to prevent robbers from jumping the counter and helping themselves?


Tue, Aug 16, 2011 : 9:57 p.m.

Hers's an interesting scenario...let's say the bank has bullet resistant glass at the teller line and you are a teller. Three bank robbers enter the lobby and point a gun at one of customer's head. What do you do? 1. Tell them tough luck and get lost because you have a bit of protection behind the glass. or 2. Cooperate with their demands because you don't want the to harm the innocent bystander in the lobby. The glass at the teller line does not prevent bank robberies.

John of Saline

Tue, Aug 16, 2011 : 4:56 p.m.

I remember when our banks had them too, 20 years ago or so. They removed that stuff in the 1990s. Not sure why. I can understand doing a cost-benefit analysis and concluding it's not worth it for new banks, but removing it from old ones?


Tue, Aug 16, 2011 : 4:35 a.m.

Thank goodness for online banking and debit cards.


Tue, Aug 16, 2011 : 4:06 a.m.

Anyone else notice @ 0:29 one of the robbers helps herself to the guy in red shirt's deposit or withdraw? I wonder if he is "out" that money?


Tue, Aug 16, 2011 : 9:46 p.m.

FDIC insurance does not cover branch robberies. FDIC insurance premiums cover the depositors in case the bank goes into receivership. If the customer received the cash after a transaction had been completed, the bank would not be liable if the robber stole the customer's money too. Technically the customer's recourse to collect would be from the robber. I know good luck with suing the bank robber and trying to collect back your money. The bank could, and probably would, out of good PR pay back the customer.


Tue, Aug 16, 2011 : 6:02 p.m.

If that money (vs. checks) was sitting on the counter then likely it was not deposited. If it was not deposited, somehow I doubt FDIC will be insuring it. My guess is yes the customer is out that money. IANAL


Tue, Aug 16, 2011 : 1:57 p.m.

Not if the bank is FIDC insured.


Tue, Aug 16, 2011 : 3:07 a.m.

Not sure whether anybody else noticed, but one or two of those robbers are definitely female. Intriguing.


Tue, Aug 16, 2011 : 1:52 p.m.

How can you tell?


Tue, Aug 16, 2011 : 12:43 a.m.

I've never watched a video of a robbery in action, and this video is very terrifying. Thank goodness no one was hurt, I kept waiting for a kick or some injury. To lie there on the floor waiting for anything would be excruciating.


Tue, Aug 16, 2011 : 2:56 a.m.

While the message was not "nice" if you think about it, I was attempting to minimize your trauma. Give it some more thought.


Tue, Aug 16, 2011 : 2:16 a.m.

Wow way to minimize trauma..


Tue, Aug 16, 2011 : 1:31 a.m.

right because no-one ever gets robbed at an ATM either... methinks you need to rethink that equation, starting with the most important


Tue, Aug 16, 2011 : 1:17 a.m.

As someone who has witnessed a bank robbery, it is the most terrifying experience. You have absolutely NO control over what is happening I have never felt as helpless as I was in that circumstance. I will never go into a bank lobby again.

Joe Hood

Tue, Aug 16, 2011 : 12:24 a.m.

The guy in the red shirt got right up to get on ID on the escape car (that was great!). Too bad the car was probably a stolen.

Terrin Bell

Tue, Aug 16, 2011 : 1:38 a.m.

Actually it was stupid. If the people had been armed, he could have lost his life.

dading dont delete me bro

Tue, Aug 16, 2011 : 1:16 a.m.

i thought the guy in red got up to lock the doors to keep them from coming back in.


Mon, Aug 15, 2011 : 11:02 p.m.

How sad to lay on the floor with your life or death at someone else's whim. Not me thanks.


Tue, Aug 16, 2011 : 9:36 p.m.

Thank you for your perspective.


Tue, Aug 16, 2011 : 4:23 p.m.

Not my money and not my job. The perps clearly were not interested in the customers. The customer's on the floor were not directly threatened with deadly force or a overt weapon (other than disparity of force). You can bet I would've been laying on the floor with the rest but while I was not being watched I would've gotten to a more defensible position and had my pistol at the ready under me. I would be a good witness, but if threatened and possibly if someone else would've been threatened, I would've been in a good position to act. I guarantee I am doing everything in my power to get home to my family and not be waiting to die.


Tue, Aug 16, 2011 : 12:55 p.m.

Ricebrnr - would you have fired your weapon at one of the three suspects if you were one of those two customer lying on the floor?


Mon, Aug 15, 2011 : 10:31 p.m.

Remember the good old days when bank robbers wore suits and fedoras? There was an art to it back then, now its all smash and grab.....crude in comparison.

5c0++ H4d13y

Tue, Aug 16, 2011 : 2:38 a.m.

I'm sure no one alive remembers those days.


Mon, Aug 15, 2011 : 10:22 p.m.

Banks need to start hiring armed security guards and having them stationed in the lobby. Until this happens, these easy robberies will occur and employees and customers will be put at serious risk. Oh that's right, a security guard's wages might cut into the bank's fat cat profits.


Tue, Aug 16, 2011 : 8:17 p.m.

I disagree with rs. Where is the data to support your statement that "a security guard never stopped a bank robbery." The presence of an armed security in a bank lobby would deter many opportunistic robbers from even attempting a robbery in a bank with armed security. Most bank robberies are committed due to the perception of an easy target. An armed guard changed that equation.


Tue, Aug 16, 2011 : 10:27 a.m.

The reason banks got away from the practice of a security guard is because a security guard never stopped a bank robbery. Usually they only served to escalate violence by pulling their gun on the robber, sometimes even starting a gun fight. Numbers will show there are far few casualties in a bank robbery when you don't have a "hero" confronting them. Its best if everybody does what they did here, just do what they say and let them get in and out.


Mon, Aug 15, 2011 : 10:01 p.m.

They never caught the three who robbed the Ann rbor banks early in the summer did they? Looks like the same behavior.