Crime - Sacto 911

Spotted buying razors, suspect held in capital area’s ‘Bearded Bandit’ bank holdups

A man dubbed the “Bearded Bandit” by law enforcement agencies and linked to three Sacramento-area bank robberies, was arrested Wednesday in Brentwood.
A man dubbed the “Bearded Bandit” by law enforcement agencies and linked to three Sacramento-area bank robberies, was arrested Wednesday in Brentwood. Surveillance photo provided by Elk Grove Police Department

A man believed to be the bank robber dubbed the “Bearded Bandit” by law enforcement agencies and linked to three Sacramento-area bank robberies was arrested Wednesday in Brentwood.

The FBI announced that Kenneth Ellis was taken into custody by Brentwood police after they were alerted by someone who recognized the man as a result of media coverage.

The Associated Press reported that a drugstore customer saw a hairy-faced man shopping for razors and called police. The man then led police on a chase throughout the city.

Ellis is suspected in at least 11 bank robberies, one attempted robbery and three casing incidents in several Northern California counties, according to the FBI. He is a suspect in the March 1 robberies of the Chase Bank, 5010 Elk Grove Blvd., Elk Grove, and Wells Fargo Bank, 3518 Marconi Ave., Sacramento, as well the attempted robbery of the Wells Fargo Bank at 1235 Stratford Ave. in Dixon the same day. He also is suspected of robbing the Bank of Stockton at 230 Main St. in Rio Vista on Monday.

In each of the robberies, the suspect presented a demand note, often from a black merchant’s bag, and left the scene without incident. No weapon was seen or mentioned during the robberies, according to the FBI.

Cathy Locke: 916-321-5287, @lockecathy

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