February 3, 2012

Man arrested for attempting to rob bank

Stock Island – A man is in custody today, charged with attempting to rob the First State Bank on Stock Island.

43 year old Eli Escalera walked in to the bank at 12:30 p.m. He had a pair of shorts on his head and he handed one of the bank tellers a note which said “give me what are 20s and 50s”. The manager was nearby watching, and the teller asked “what do you want?” At that point, Escalera said “never mind” and walked out of the bank.

The manager of the bank called Detective Donald Catala and relayed descriptive information to him. Detective Catala was close by and responded; he also issued the descriptive information over police radios to deputies in the area. Deputies were looking for a Hispanic male wearing a blue shirt, dark colored cargo pants, with scars on his face.

Deputy Matt Dowling was nearby as well and, as he approached 5th Street and MacDonald Avenue, he looked down 5th Street and saw a man fitting Escalera’s description who was taking a pair of dark colored pants off. When he saw Deputy Dowling he jumped on his bike and fled. He was caught near 3rd Avenue and 5th Street and was taken into custody. The discarded clothing was taken as evidence.

Detective Catala transported a witness to the area and she identified Escalera as the man who had tried to rob the bank. She also identified the clothing he had discarded as the clothing he was wearing at the time of the robbery.

Escalera was charged with robbery. He was booked into jail.

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