You’d think that someone who used to be a cop could do a better job of robbing a bank. Not so for former Hialeah, Florida police officer Rolando Bolanos, who pleaded guilty on Wednesday to strong arm robbery.
Last year, Bolanos, 38, walked into a Bank Atlantic branch and slipped the teller a note demanding cash. After the teller handed over $2,389, Bolanos walked out, hopped in the getaway car and took off. Unfortunately, Bolanos didn’t put too much thought into the robbery.
A bank employee ran outside, and jotted down the license plate number of the car, a black Mercedes, which was registered to Bolanos. The bank’s video surveillance camera captured images of Bolanos’ distinctive wardrobe, which police later matched to clothing that he was wearing in home videos.
Police detectives also immediately suspected the former co-worker because of a distinctive mole on his neck that was described by witnesses. The bank that Bolanos robbed happened to be in the same city in which he was formerly employed.
Phone records also put Bolinas in the exact geographic location of the bank at the time of the robbery, although he tried to create an alibi by calling in a phony tip claiming to be in a distant location. Within 20 minutes of the robbery, Bolanos made a deposit at his own bank for $2,200.
After realizing the evidence was too much to overcome with a jury, Bolanos pleaded guilty and received a one-year jail term. It doesn’t sound like much jail time, but perhaps his father put in a good word for him; dad Rolando Bolanos Sr. was Hialeah’s Police Chief for over 20 years.