Thursday, February 24, 2005

Accused Bank Robber Arrested After Discussing Crime On Radio

Accused Bank Robber Arrested After Discussing Crime On Radio

A phone call to a Chicago radio confessions show may rank as one of the dumbest acts by a criminal in recent memory.

The Chicago Sun-Times reported Wednesday that a September call to WKSC-FM (103.5) led FBI investigators to a man suspected in a South Chicago Heights bank robbery.

John Gehron, regional vice president for Clear Channel Communications, said the radio show typically heard confessions about people who cheat or "steal something from work," but the caller who tipped his hand to authorities on air told WKSC's DJ "Drex" that he and five others robbed a TCF Bank inside a Jewel-Osco store last April.

According to the published report, the caller gave specific details of a crime that went unsolved for five months. He said that an employee had been in on it and that he and his fellow robbers had tied up the bank workers. He also broadcast the fact that those involved took money from the vault but avoided the dye packs, getting away with $81,000.

"So...we set everything up. We planned it out. Turned my house into a ... bank, actually, and acted it out for like, weeks," said the caller, who identified himself as "D."

The caller went on to say that the robbery was an inside job.

"The girl on the inside, she was the main key. If you want to rob a bank, you need someone on the inside," he said.

An FBI employee who was listening to the broadcast recognized details of the April 2004 crime, obtained a copy of the radio broadcast and traced the phone call, according to FBI spokesman Rob Grant.

The FBI said it traced the call back to a cell phone belonging to Randy Washington, 24, of Dolton, Ill., who was arrested last week.

Washington and his alleged accomplice, 19-year-old William Slate, were charged with one count each of felony bank robbery, WMAQ-TV in Chicago reported.

Washington was ordered held without bond. Slate, who recently moved to Dallas from Tinley Park, Ill., will be extradited to Chicago. Authorities are still looking for four others involved in the robbery.

"The bottom line is you never know who's listening, and if you're going to confess to a felony, there's that chance you take," Drex said.


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