#Hashtag Heistman Hits Four Banks In Maryland, Three Within 15 Minutes

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Steve Birr Vice Reporter
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In a matter of 15 minutes, a Maryland man robbed three banks in Montgomery County before Prince George’s County Police could arrest him Thursday.

The string of robberies capped a bank heist spree dubbed by police the “Hashtag String,” involving the robberies of at least nine banks in the area dating back to September. Leroy Earl-Morris Daley, 45, will face multiple charges for the numerous thefts, in which he would slip bank teller’s a note demanding cash with the hashtags, #nopolice, #becarefull, or #Afterwork?, according to The Washington Post.

Three of the Thursday bank robberies took place within 15 minutes of each other in a several mile stretch of area in Montgomery County. The first target was a Sun Trust Bank on Connecticut Avenue in Chevy Chase, robbed at roughly 11:20 a.m. Next was a Capital One Bank, also on Connecticut Avenue, which Daley hit at 11:29 a.m. By 11:35 a.m. Daley robbed a BB&T Bank on University Boulevard in Kensington, eluding Montgomery County authorities, reports WJLA.

“Just saw a lot of cops everywhere,” Casey Polard, a Kensington resident told WJLA.

Daley robbed a fourth bank in Prince George’s County before his arrest. Roughly two hours after the Thursday robberies, Sergeant Craig Winegardner with the Prince George’s County Police Department saw a vehicle matching the description seen at the robbery sites parked next to his unmarked cruiser outside a restaurant. Winegardner was already investigating earlier robberies now connected to Daley. Daley was arrested 15 minutes later by authorities after the sergeant called in the description of the vehicle.

“Parked right next to my cruiser was the suspect vehicle,” Winegardner told The Washington Post. “I thought, there’s no way it’s going to be this easy to close this big bank robbery string.”

Winegardner thought it was odd that Daley was in the location during broad daylight, calling it a “bold move.” The shopping area where authorities apprehended Daley normally has a large police presence. Prince George’s County Police say the arrest, bringing a close to the “Hashtag String” bank heists, is a good example of how being observant as a police officer pays off, reports The Washington Post.

“Not only do we have an usual end to a string of bank robberies,” said Prince George’s County Police spokeswoman Julie Parker. “This is the first time that we know of that hashtags were used to rob a bank.”

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