U.S. Attorney's Office
Southern District of California
(619) 557-5610
March 26, 2015

Defendant Pleads Guilty to Robbing Three Banks as the Bearded Bandit

SAN DIEGO—Christopher Andrew Gibson, dubbed the “Bearded Bandit,” pleaded guilty today to robbing three San Diego banks of more than $7,600 in late 2014.

Gibson entered his plea before U.S. Magistrate Judge Karen S. Crawford to three counts of bank robbery, and was ordered to appear in front of U.S. District Judge Marilyn L. Huff for sentencing on July 20, 2015.

In the course of the investigation, the Federal Bureau of Investigation learned that Gibson committed the first bank robbery within hours of being released from the George Bailey Detention Facility, where he was held on unrelated charges. Gibson was dubbed the “Bearded Bandit” because of the shaggy facial hair he had in the first two robberies.

According to his plea agreement, Gibson entered Wells Fargo Bank, located at 685 Saturn Boulevard, San Diego, on October 7, 2014, and presented a bank employee with a note that was paraphrased as follows: “I know your training. No dye packs. No GPS devices. I want $4,567. Hurry cause I’m not waiting all day.” Gibson then took approximately $1,419.00 from the employee and fled the bank.

Gibson admitted in his plea agreement that he followed up with a robbery a week later in Vista at a Chase Bank, located at 1641 South Melrose Drive, on October 15, 2014. During the robbery, Gibson presented a bank employee with a note, which in effect said, “I know your training. I want $4,788 in 15 seconds. No dye packs or GPS devices.” Gibson took approximately $2,240.00 from the employee and fled the bank.

Gibson’s final robbery occurred at a second Chase Bank, located at 985 Vista Way in Vista, on November 6, 2014, his plea agreement said. During the robbery, Gibson presented a bank employee with a note, reading to the effect, “Don’t be stupid and press any buttons. I know your training so just cooperate. I want $4,000 and no GPS devices or dye packs. No fake bills. I’m counting to 30.” Gibson took approximately $4,000.00 from the employee and fled the bank. The demand notes were not recovered.

DEFENDANT

  • Criminal Case 14-cr-03367-H
  • Christopher Andrew Gibson
  • Age: 26
  • Vista, California

SUMMARY OF CHARGES

  • Counts 1-3: Bank Robbery—Title 18, U.S.C., Section 2113(a)
  • Maximum penalty: 20 years’ imprisonment and $250,000 fine

AGENCY

  • Federal Bureau of Investigation
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