ALCOA, Tenn. (WATE) — A man accused of robbing a Louisville bank at gunpoint on Jan. 24 was captured within 2 miles of the bank after crashing his motorcycle and spilling cash near the intersection of Pellissippi Parkway and Alcoa Highway.
Richard Desmond Hines, of Blount County, is charged with bank robbery and brandishing a firearm in furtherance of a crime. Hines is innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.
A false call about an active shooter at a nearby retail center was received by police just before the bank robbery was reported. When asked on Thursday if the two are connected, the FBI declined to comment.
A criminal complaint filed with the U.S. District Court of Tennessee signed by FBI Special Agent Wesley P. Leatham, outlines what investigators believe happened during the bank robbery near Alcoa. Motivation for the alleged crime remains unknown.
A lone white male arrived in the parking lot of the CBBC Bank on Topside Drive just before 3:30 p.m. on Tuesday. The bearded man was wearing a black beanie hat, blue pants, a white dress shirt and a tie under a black jacket and black shoes. In his right hand, investigators said he carried a manila folder.
Once inside the bank, the robber approached the teller counter and asked to speak with a manager. The manager, who is not identified in the complaint, met the robber in the lobby and invited him into her office. The robber told the manager he had a problem with his account. The FBI said in the complaint that the robber exited the office to retrieve his ID, but when he returned a short time later, he revealed a “dark colored revolver.”
‘Go to your vault and give me all your money.’
The unnamed manager complied with the robber’s demand, exiting her office and walking toward the bank vault. The FBI said in the complaint that the robber was following the manager while holding the revolver in his left hand. The manager took the keys to the vault from a teller and entered the vault. There, witnesses told the FBI that the manager, held at gunpoint, “began removing stacks of United States currency from the vault and placed it inside of a maroon-colored CBBC reusable grocery bag.”
The robber took the bag and fled the bank. In the parking lot, the robber put on a black motorcycle helmet and fled the scene, with the currency, on a motorcycle.
‘Large amounts of cash in the crash debris’
A short time later, a witness driving east on Pellissippi Parkway told investigators that he noticed a motorcycle attempting to pass his vehicle on the left side as he drove up the exit ramp toward Alcoa Highway.
“The WITNESS then observed the motorcycle travel off of the roadway, down a grass embankment and crash,” the affidavit states.
The witness told investigators that he walked down a hill to check on the driver and found “large amounts of cash in the crash debris. The driver of the motorcycle got to his feet and left on foot, crossing the on-ramp and heading toward a business on Chandler Road.
Meanwhile officers with the FBI and Alcoa Police Department arrived at the bank and at the crash scene — which were about 1.5 miles apart.
Officers noted the “large amount” of currency in the grass at the crash scene, including several stacks containing bank bands stamped “CBBC bank,” a black zipper bag containing several more stacks.
Also among the debris, under some of the currency in the grass, was a “black revolver that was missing the handgrips,” according to the criminal complaint. The FBI agent, noting in the complaint that he was wearing gloves, opened the cylinder and found it to be “loaded with six (6) live .38 Special cartridges.”
Characters on the license plate on the motorcycle “appeared intentionally altered,” the officer wrote in the affidavit, also noting that the motorcycle had strips of red tape stuck to the rear fender and a black trash bag covering the gas tank.
‘Tears in his clothing and blood on his face’
A male matching the bank robber’s description was taken into custody “at or near Chandler Road” in Alcoa, near the crash scene. The complaint says the man had, “tears in his clothing and blood on his face.”
A “reusable grocery bag containing a large amount of United States currency” was found in the vicinity of where Hines was taken into custody, investigators say in the complaint.
Hines was treated by an ambulance crew and taken to Alcoa Police Department for questioning. However, the FBI notes in the criminal complaint that Hines “was not able to be interviewed due to unresponsiveness and complaints of back pain” and he was taken to a nearby hospital for further evaluation.
Hines was placed under arrest one day later, on January 25. He is housed as a federal prisoner in the Blount County Jail.
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The amount of money stolen, as well as how much was recovered, is not known. Deposits at CBBC Bank are FDIC insured.