We’re losing our edge

Apparently, Seattle was only fourth last year nationwide in bank robberies.

With 74 bank robberies in 2006, Seattle ranked fourth in the nation behind only Los Angeles (357), Boston (343) and Philadelphia (292), said FBI spokeswoman Robbie Burroughs.

Statewide, FBI agents and police responded to 272 bank robberies last year, compared with 221 in 2005, Burroughs said.

Washington has historically had among the highest number of bank robberies. The state recorded 357 robberies in 1998, an all-time high. However, the numbers have declined in recent years.

FBI Special Agent Larry Carr blames our high number of bank robberies on Seattle’s high level of homelessness.

Of all of the robberies investigated last year, Carr said he can’t think of any suspect who had a permanent address.

“If they’re not homeless, they’re transient. They’re living in a hotel room based upon the proceeds of their bank robbery,”

In case your wondering, here are some WA bank robbery fun facts:

  • 93 percent of bank robbers are men.
  • Most bank robberies are nonviolent. Only four assaults occurred in 272 robberies.
  • The bank most likely to be hit? Bank of America.
  • Average take statewide? $3,622
  • Average take Seattle? $2,004
  • Average take Spokane? $6,026

Hmm. I’ve been robbing banks in the wrong city.


  1. 1

    Libertarian spews:


    Don’t make comments like “I’ve been robbing banks in the wrong city.” The geeks at the FBI will be on you like ugly on an ape: they don’t have a sense of humor.

    Unfortunately, one has to worry about government zealotry at times.

  2. 5

    jsa on commercial drive spews:

    Willie Sutton robbed banks because “that’s where the money is”.

    Alas, not anymore.

    A semi-organized house burglary will net more than $3,000 (i.e., pick your neighborhood well, and take some time to do the job right. Don’t smash the window and grab the stereo. People notice, and stereos have a notoriously low hock value).

    A car sold in pieces on eBay will net much more than $3,000.

    In addition, robbing houses, or cars, is not a federal crime, does not get the FBI or the Secret Service involved, and very few cars are protected during business hours by a uniformed police officer with a gun.

    I don’t advocate breaking the law to make a living, but if you’ve decided to do that, bank robbery is a stupid, desperate crime done by stupid, desperate people.

  3. 6

    Yer Killin Me spews:

    There are successful bank robberies going on all the time. They’re just being conducted via phishing attacks and the like rather than up close and personal.

    Oh, and the banks don’t like for you to know about them. They want you to think your money is safe, and figure if they don’t tell you about the successful robberies, you won’t think there’s a problem. Sound familiar?

  4. 7

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    Robbing banks for chump change is stoopid! The GOP has figured this out — the way to do it is get control of the White House and Congress, then loot the federal treasury — legally! Well, at least, non-prosecutably (because you control the prosecutors and judges). Hell, why stop with the Treasury? Loot the Social Security Trust Fund too! But why stop there? Loot the whole fucking economy!!! Why steal billions when you can make off with trillions? Why not take a cue from the Banana Republic dictators and —

    rig elections
    establish an autocracy
    turn the country into a profit center

    Yep, the GOP has the right idea — Turn America into America, Inc.! and turn America’s workers into serfs. The formula is very simple: Dictatorship + Cheap Labor! Here’s how:

    “When you cut right through it, right-wing ideology is just ‘dime-store economics’ – intended to dress their ideology up and make it look respectable. You don’t really need to know much about economics to understand it. They certainly don’t. It all gets down to two simple words. ‘Cheap labor’.

    That’s their whole philosophy in a nutshell … cheap-labor conservatives are defenders of corporate America – whose fortunes depend on labor. The larger the labor supply, the cheaper it is. The more desperately you need a job, the cheaper you’ll work, and the more power those ‘corporate lords’ have over you. If you are a wealthy elite – or a ‘wannabe’ like most dittoheads – your wealth, power and privilege is enhanced by a labor pool, forced to work cheap.”

    So, to bring this about, you simply oppose social spending and minimum wage, support “free trade,” oppose unions, support privatizing education, oppose Social Security and Medicare, oppose the progressive income tax, support tax cuts for the rich and deficit spending, oppose food and housing assistance for the poor, support every oppressive function of government … you get the idea.

    See http://tinyurl.com/lnzs3 for details.

    It’s easy to overthrow a government, take over a country, and turn its economy into a personal asset. Just use this guy http://tinyurl.com/w2vb8 as a model. The wingnuts do …

  5. 8

    jsa on commercial drive spews:

    YKM @ 6:

    I know all about phishing, and wire fraud, and numerous variants which use social engineering to coax out privleged information out of people to defraud money.

    Bank robbery (the traditional stick ‘em up) is akin to kicking the front door of the house down. Since the US is no-longer a cash-based society, the rewards to be gained from this diminish each year.

    Social engineering, or “con games” as the oldsters know them, trick you into opening the front door so the bad guys can get in unobstructed and clean the house out. It’s considerably more lucrative, and always has been.

    Now, if you can help me out, I have access to 30 million dollars which I need your assistance in getting out of Canada. Would you be willing to help act as a go-between for this money? I’ll give you 10% of the proceeds.

  6. 9

    headless lucy spews:

    “Ma’am. If you really want to get that carpet clean, sanitized, and stain protected, you’re going to have to invest a little more than $99.95! I noticed some toys in the family room. Do you have kids or pets? Both! You are definitely going to need to get this carpet sanitized!”

    “$860!!!!!!!!! Are you crazy?”

    “Well, we are offering a special 25% discount to our previous customers…”

    I’m sure you get the idea. Why risk jail when just a wee bit O’ the Blarney will get you the same thing!

  7. 10

    Yer Killin Me spews:

    Only if you’ll use 10% of the remainder to buy some Daddy’s Little Helper from my friendly and helpful online kiosk. (Gotta be careful I don’t crash into Goldy’s filter here)

  8. 11

    Yer Killin Me spews:

    Yeah, the old ways aren’t really the best anymore. You hold up a Wells Fargo, you get maybe $3,000 but more likely 15 to 20 in the pen. You steal online, you can get thousands of times that and even if you get caught you’re a lot more likely to be hired as a security consultant than you are to go to jail.