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Chicago bank robber apprehended in Toledo

Rosemary R. Sobol, Chicago Tribune –

A man suspected in the July robbery of a Hickory Hills bank was arrested in Toledo, Ohio over the weekend after being spotted by people who recognized the man’s face from news reports, the FBI announced today.

The man, Jeffrey A. Kaplan, is believed to have robbed three other banks in Chicago over the summer.

Kaplan, 30, of Chicago, was arrested without incident Wednesday when members of a local violence crimes task force swarmed a bus station in Toledo after people recognized him from surveillance photos, according to a statement from the FBI.

Kaplan has been charged in a criminal complaint with one count of bank robbery for the July 26 holdup at the TCF Bank branch at 9357 South Roberts Rd., according to a statement from the FBI.

In that case, Kaplan approached a teller window and made verbal demands to the teller. When he presented a note demanding money and handed the teller a black plastic bag, she placed all of the money in her drawer – including a dye pack – in the bag and gave the bag back to him, the statement said.

After he fled, a witness near the bank saw him throw something to the ground – and saw smoke coming from the area – before getting into a van which left the scene. The curious bystander walked to that area and found the black bag filled with cash stained with red dye from the pack exploding, the statement said.

The FBI identified Kaplan as the robber after seeing surveillance photos of him which had been published on the Internet and in news reports, the statement said. Agents learned he was aboard a bus on his way to New York, a route which included a stop in Toledo, the statement said.

He remains in custody in Toledo awaiting a hearing and will be brought back to the city and formally charged, the statement said.

Kaplan is also suspected of robbing three other banks in July and August:  a TCF Bank at 2538 W. 47th St. in Chicago on July 30, the Metropolitan Bank, 4050 South Archer Ave., on Aug. 6; and the Citibank, 2295 North Milwaukee Ave., on Aug. 10.

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