By TEREASA NIMS
Sunday Times Newspapers
ALLEN PARK — A 62-year-old Ypsilanti man recently arrested in connection with a Royal Oak PNC Bank robbery using a toy gun is suspected in connection with two and possibly three local robberies.
“We have someone in custody,” Detective Dave Williams said Thursday. “We are reasonably certain this is the person.
“The FBI is working with us hand-in-hand. It’s their ballgame.”
Curtis Lee Williams was released from prison in 2007 after 14 years for robbing a bank, Royal Oak Police Lt. Dave Clemens said Thursday.
Detective Williams said Curtis Williams is suspected in the Feb. 7 robbery of Chase Bank, 14601 Southfield Road, and PNC Bank, 19100 Goddard Road, on Jan. 7, where he shoved a customer out of the way and demanded the teller give him money and telling her to hurry.
The same man may be a suspect in the robbery of a Taylor PNC Bank, 24241 Goddard on Jan. 6. Police haven’t confirmed this as of press time.
Curtis Williams was arraigned before U.S. District Magistrate Judge Elizabeth Stafford following his Feb. 17 arrest. He is jailed without bond.
This is not Curtis Williams’ first rodeo. His criminal history includes felony carrying of a concealed weapon, felony larceny of a building, bank robbery and felony larceny from a vacant building.
Clemens said police caught Curtis Williams Feb. 17 when he was suspected of robbing a PNC Bank at 1710 E. Twelve Mile Road. The suspect demanded money from a teller using a toy gun for intimidation, and a customer confronted the man and tried to subdue him, Clemens said.
Clemens said the suspect broke free and fled to a vehicle parked several blocks away while witnesses called 911.
“If not for the witnesses quickly calling police, it is likely this suspect would have gotten away,” Royal Oak Police Chief Corey O’Donohue said. “I would like to commend all the witnesses, including Royal Oak’s own Department of Public Works employees who briefly pursued this suspect on foot.”
If convicted, Curtis Williams faces up to life in prison.
Curtis Williams’ preliminary examination has not yet been set.
(Tereasa Nims can be reached at [email protected].)