ALCOA, Tenn. — A bank robber was unable to escape with a grocery bag full of cash on Tuesday after he ended up crashing his motorcycle in Blount County, according to federal agents.
According to a criminal complaint filed with the U.S. District Court in Knoxville. a special agent with the Federal Bureau of Investigation said the robbery at a CBBC Bank on Topside Road began with a man wanting to speak with a manager.
The man, identified in the complaint as Richard Desmond Hines, Jr., arrived on a motorcycle wearing a black beanie hat with a dress shirt, tie and blue pants. The manager asked him to step into her office, where he told her he was having a problem with his account.
The manager said the man told her he needed to go outside to grab his identification. When he returned, the special agent said the man was holding a loaded revolver and told the manager something to the effect of, "Go to your vault and give me all your money."
The agent said the manager complied, leading him to the vault and opening it up. According to the complaint, she handed him a grocery bag filled with stacks of money before he left the bank.
They said the suspect drove away on a motorcycle toward Alcoa Highway with the bag of cash in hand. However, the man didn't make it far before the FBI said he went off Pellissippi Parkway and crashed his motorcycle on an embankment after trying to pass a vehicle on the single-lane on-ramp to Alcoa Highway.
The agent said the driver of the other vehicle stopped and got out to check on Hines. The other driver said he saw large amounts of cash in the grass around the crash as he approached.
The witness said he tried to help Hines before he got on his feet and ran across the on-ramp toward the Airport Auto Auction on Chandler Road.
A short time later, Alcoa police said the robbery suspect was found in the area and taken into custody by U.S. Marshals. The FBI agent said Hines' clothes were torn and he had blood on his face, saying officers also found a grocery bag containing a large amount of cash in the same area.
The agent said Hines was not able to be interviewed because of "unresponsiveness and complaints of back pain." An ambulance took him to Blount County Memorial Hospital for evaluation.
The agent said authorities found a revolver under some cash near the crash site, saying the gun's make, model and serial number appeared to be "obliterated." The agent said he opened up the cylinder of the gun for safety reasons to find it loaded with six bullets. He also found a black beanie in the crash debris.
The agent said he also noticed that some of the characters on the motorcycle's license plate appeared to have been intentionally altered.
On Wednesday, a U.S. magistrate judge issued an arrest warrant for Hines on suspicion of bank robbery and brandishing a firearm in furtherance of a crime of violence -- and he was formally taken into custody in Knoxville.
Alcoa police said Tuesday that when the authorities received calls about the robbery, they were just finishing up a sweep at an Alcoa Walmart after receiving a false report of employees being held at gunpoint.
Anyone with information about the false report or the robbery should call the Alcoa Police Department at 865-981-4111.