Ecorse bank robber threatened to ‘kill everyone in the lobby’ – Story

– He’s accused of robbing banks in at least three cities – now he’s facing charges.

Perhaps not your typical bank robber.

“He had wild hair with an orange tint to it,” said Det. Tim Sassak. “It looked like a wig. It was super humid that day and when he came in to rob the bank, his hair was all bushed out.”

Ecorse police say this brazen bandit, 18-year-old James McKellip, wasn’t so swift. He robbed a PNC bank earlier this week and carried in a note barely legible. Police say he casually walked into the bank up and passed along a note to the teller that said: “Do not look away to anyone. Don’t reach anywhere but to grab the money. I want $20,000 or close to it. I got a gun.”

The note goes on to say “Pack. Move fast. Don’t move anywhere but in front of you. I’ll kill everyone in the lobby.”

“The teller was very calm and did a great job,” Sassack said. “She actually took the money but took stacks of $1s and $5s.”

The teller slid the bills under the window and the cash started to pile up.

“When it got too high, he just grabbed it and tried to exit out of the bank,” Sassack said. “Good for us, bad for him. He left a note.”

The suspect was in such a rush, police say McKellip ran into a glass door hitting his face and he put his hand on the glass door.

He left a near perfect handprint. And with the help of Dearborn police and their fingerprinting system police realized their robber is McKellip who had been convicted of felonious assault with a probation violation warrant for his arrest.

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The Fugitive Task Force tracked him down.

“Four and a half hours after that, my suspect was sitting in front of me in handcuffs,” Sassack said.

Police say McKellip also faces charges in Southgate for trying to rob a Citizens Bank on Fort and Eureka. The teller there refused to read his note.

He confessing to that and police believe he may be connected to another bank robbery in the area.

“I think the reality had hit him (and he realized) ‘I’m caught,'” Sassack said.

Right now McKellip faces one year to life in prison just in this Ecorse case but will likely be charged as a habitual offender -all, for 18-hundred bucks.

“Eighteen hundred dollars isn’t worth the aggravation he’s going to get,” Sassack said.
 

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