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Springfield man robs US Bank

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Due largely to the testimony of a village resident and information from a security tape, on Tuesday, March 31, Yellow Springs police arrested a Springfield man who confessed to having robbed US Bank last week. According to Yellow Springs Police Chief John Grote, David B. Mitchell, 44, was apprehended at his home at 1452 South Lowry Avenue with the help of the Springfield police and city SWAT team. Mitchell was arraigned in Greene County Common Pleas Court on Wednesday.

At 12:34 p.m. on Thursday, March 26, police received notice through the bank’s security system that US Bank, on the corner of Short Street and Xenia Avenue, had been robbed. According to witnesses who wish to remain unnamed, a tall black male wearing a dark, puffy coat walked into the bank, went to one of the teller’s windows and quietly demanded the money from that drawer. Following procedure, the teller handed him part of the cash from the drawer, and without brandishing a weapon, the suspect exited the building.

The incident spanned just about three minutes, and it was so quiet that many bank employees were unaware that anything had happened. But a second bank teller noticed that the customer was acting suspicious, and she pulled the security alarm, according to anonymous sources.

The offender walked out with what Grote said was a “small amount” of cash, but “not enough” to justify the potential felony charges he will likely face from a grand jury. Grote could not specify the amount without compromising bank security, he said.

Upon exiting the bank, the suspect walked quickly to a dark, older model Mercedes, which was parallel parked between two other cars in front of Tom’s Market. According to a villager who was talking on her cell phone in the vehicle directly behind his, she noticed the offender because he appeared rushed and seemed to be overdressed for the moderate weather. And when he attempted to pull out, he struck her car three times before peeling away from the curb.

Watching the offender in bewilderment, the witness saw him turn his car around at Speedway and come back through the downtown area toward Springfield, she said this week.

According to a security video captured by a camera outside Dunphy Real Estate, the witness saw the vehicle pass the business going south and then a minute later, pass it again heading north on Xenia Avenue. From that video, police were able to corroborate a partial license plate number from the witness and use it to conduct a vehicle search, which led them to its owner in Springfield.

The witness’s description of the offender matched the teller’s description as well as the security tape image, which also helped police to match the vehicle with the man, Grote said.

“Her general description and the partial plate helped us immensely,” he said. “It was extremely helpful, and based on that and information from the tape, we were able to go forward in identifying the man.”

Mitchell was at home with other family members when police came to arrest him with a search warrant. According to Grote, during the confession, Mitchell said he robbed the bank to pay his bills. But Mitchell also has a lengthy criminal history, according to Grote. Mitchell was familiar with Yellow Springs because he often travels through town on his way to school, Grote said.

The last time the bank on that corner of town was robbed was in 1959, when it was called Miami Deposit Bank, according to then-bank president Perry Stewart and the Yellow Springs News. The Yellow Springs Credit Union was robbed in the mid-1970’s, and in 1996, police caught a man who stole cash from the front window at Cornerstone Bank, which is now Wesbanco, Grote said.

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