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FBI

Raymar Arthur, 31, believed to be the “Wiggin’ Out Bandit,” was taken into custody by the FBI without incident at his home in Maricopa. He is charged with 10 bank robberies and three attempted bank robberies, which occurred between March 27 and Oct. 4 this year.

Maricopa Police Department helped close down a street in Rancho El Dorado during the activity.

The nickname, “Wiggin’ Out Bandit,” came from the various wigs that were worn during the bank robberies. At least one bank was targeted twice. The robberies averaged about one a month until a spree in August hit Chandler, Mesa and Queen Creek.

During the robberies, the suspect verbally demanded money or presented tellers with a demand note, then fled on foot with an undisclosed amount of money. No one was physically injured.

The FBI believes Arthur is responsible for the following robberies and/or attempted robberies:

March 27, at approximately 5:55 p.m., at the Chase Bank, 1021 N. Ellsworth Road in Mesa.

April 11, at approximately 4:14 p.m., at the Wells Fargo, 1951 W. Baseline Road in Mesa.

May 11, at approximately 6:53 p.m., at the MidFirst Bank, 4750 E. Chandler Blvd. in Phoenix.

June 1, at approximately 6:11 p.m., at the Wells Fargo, 1951 W. Baseline Road in Mesa.

June 25, at approximately 6:01 p.m., at the US Bank, 3185 W. Apache Trail in Apache Junction.

July 16, at approximately 5:51 p.m., at the Wells Fargo bank, 339 E. Brown Road in Mesa.

Aug. 1, at approximately 7:02 p.m., at the Wells Fargo bank, 4970 S. Alma School Road in Chandler.

Aug. 2, at approximately 7:02 p.m., at the US Bank, 1960 W. Main St. in Mesa.

Aug. 16, at approximately 2:46 p.m., at the Wells Fargo bank, 339 E. Brown Road in Mesa.

Aug. 22, at approximately 7:00 p.m., at the Wells Fargo, 1122 N. Higley Road in Mesa.

Aug. 23, at approximately 5:55 p.m., at the US Bank, 18495 E. Queen Creek Road in Queen Creek.

Aug. 23, at approximately 6:30 p.m., at the Wells Fargo bank, 155 W. Combs Road in Queen Creek.

Oct. 4, at approximately 6:54 p.m., at the US Bank located at 1960 West Main Street in Mesa.

Surveillance photos of “Wiggin’ Out Bandit”

An anonymous tip from the public ultimately led to the identification of the suspect.

The day of his arrest, Arthur had a disposition in Maricopa Municipal Court on two charges in a DUI drug case from April. One charge was dismissed while he pleaded guilty to the second with incarceration ordered along with fines of more than $1,500.

 

Aaron Vasquez (MCSO photo 2014)

 

Residents left their Homestead neighborhood early Friday morning to discover numerous agents from the Federal Bureau of Investigation swarming a nearby home.

The investigation at a residence on Mac Neil Street July 27 was linked to the arrest of an armed robbery suspect the same day, the FBI confirmed Tuesday.

Aaron Vasquez, 23, was arrested in connection with an armed robbery of a fast food restaurant on Alma School Road in Chandler on May 28.

A series of ongoing armed robberies in May across the valley caught the FBI’s attention and led the agency to believe Vasquez was engaged in “at least 15 armed robberies of various fast food restaurants between September 13, 2017 and July 19, 2018,” according to an FBI press release published Tuesday.

The alleged robberies took place in Mesa, Chandler, Gilbert and Tempe.

Details in the press release allege search warrants executed by the FBI and partner law enforcement agencies last Friday recovered items and clothing similar to items used in various robberies.

“In each robbery, the individual utilized a similar handgun and was described with similar physical characteristics,” the release stated.

The FBI charged Vasquez in a complaint filed in federal court that formally accuses him of the Chandler armed robbery in May but reported possible additional charges may follow in connection to the others.

The Chandler, Mesa, Gilbert and Tempe police departments contributed resources to the investigation, according to the FBI Violent Crimes Task Force.

“This is another example of Arizona law enforcement agencies working together to protect our communities from violent crime,” said Michael DeLeon, special agent in charge of the FBI Phoenix Field Office.

The Maricopa Police Department said Friday the FBI notified the department of their presence at the address in Homestead. MPD was not on scene July 27, according to MPD Sgt. Hal Koozer.

Vasquez has a previous weapons misconduct conviction out of Maricopa County Superior Court in 2014.