Thursday, December 21, 2006

Pure genius - NOT !

LINCOLNTON, N.C. -- Lincolnton authorities say they've arrested the man who used a hammer to rob a gas station earlier this week, and then went on to try to hold up two banks.

Police said Michael Shane Lineburg is the man seen in surveillance video robbing the Petro Express on Tuesday.

Officers say Lineburg then attempted to rob the First Charter Bank in downtown Lincolnton early Wednesday by handing the teller a note that stated, “Give me money I need help.”

“But he didn’t have it worded as this was a robbery of any type. They couldn’t figure out what he wanted and kept asking him. Finally he got frustrated with the questions that the clerk was asking him and he left the bank without anything,” said Det. Kameron Keener.

Police say he went two blocks to the Bank of America on Aspen Street and this time spoke for himself.

“Said, ‘I’m not a bad person. I really hat to do this, but I need $1,000 dollars,’ and she asked him for his account number and he said he didn’t have any and this is a robbery,” Keener said.

Police say the strange series of crimes came to an end when Lineburg left his pants with his wallet near the scene of the crime.

“Sometimes people just do some unorthodox things, and this is one of them,” Keener said.

Witnesses told police they saw a man stripping off his top layer of clothes near the bank, which investigators say was part of a plan to disguise his appearance. He dropped his pants in an alley and police recognized the face on his identification.

“We had a pretty good idea who the suspect was, but that pretty much confirmed it,” an officer said.

Lineburg’s wife was also arrested and charged as an accessory to bank robbery.

Police said they believe the man committed the crimes for drug money.

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