WORKMEN NAIL ROBBER! Construction workers grab red-handed bank robber

See how this stickup man’s plan for the ‘perfect crime’ went badly awry …

After the robbery, this outer East Portland Bank of the West branch remains closed.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton
Perhaps 44-year-old Frazer Scott Piccolo thought he had the perfect plan for getting his hands on some fast cash.

To make a quick getaway, he traveled to the Bank of the West branch located at 8135 SE Division Street in a taxi cab – and told the driver to wait, while he made a “quick withdrawal” – knowing he’d soon have plenty of spending cash.

Reportedly, Piccolo strolled into the bank at 10:42 a.m. on August 19, and put his plan into action.

Signs on the door say it all – that the branch is “temporarily closed due to an emergency”.

According to what Portland Police Bureau (PPB) Robbery Detectives Maury Mudrick and Darren Posey later learned, Piccolo and presented a demand note and told the teller to hand over cash. He money he received he stuffed into a trouser pocket.

“Piccolo then fled the bank, and got into the taxi to leave the area,” recounted PPB Public Information Officer Sgt. Pete Simpson, taking up the story.

The cabbie did as he was told, and headed west on SE Division Street, then turned north on SE 77th Avenue.

Construction workers at Portland Community College Southeast Center captured a man who they suspected just robbed a bank.

“While the suspect was seated in the back seat of the cab, a dye pack contained in the money he had taken exploded, and got red paint all over his hands,” said Simpson.

In a cloud of red dye mist, Piccolo made a quick exit from the taxi – it’s unknown if the cabbie ever got his fare – and ran east, along the north side of Portland Community College Southeast Center’s construction site.

“Nearby construction workers noticed Piccolo running from a cab with red paint on his hands, and assumed that he’d just done a bank robbery,” Simpson continued.

When one of the construction workers confronted the suspect, Piccolo took a swing at him. Piccolo missed; the construction worker’s punch connected. The suspected bank robber found himself on the ground, with a busted lip, in a headlock, looking up at a bunch of workers who had summoned the police.

With Federal Bank Robbery charges pending, 44-year-old Frazer Scott Piccolo remains in custody. MCDC booking photo

Just nine minutes after pulling the bank heist with which he is charged, Piccolo was arrested at 10:51 a.m. When detectives reportedly found the demand note in his wallet, and a red-stained $20 bill in his blown-out pocket, they were certain they’d collared their man.

Piccolo was booked into the Multnomah County Detention Center at 3:26 p.m. on a Federal Hold, without bail, pending formal Federal Bank Robbery charges.

© 2013 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News

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