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Feds Say They've Arrested Suspected 'Pink Lady Bandit' Behind Four Bank Robberies

A suspect was arrested in connection with at least four bank robberies in three East Coast states, according to the FBI.
A suspect was arrested in connection with at least four bank robberies in three East Coast states, according to the FBI.

Over the last two weeks, a woman approached bank tellers at four banks across the East Coast with notes demanding money, according to the FBI. She often wore large sunglasses, yoga pants and a baseball cap. And she sometimes carried a hot pink purse, which led to her nickname – the "Pink Lady Bandit."

The suspected Pink Lady Bandit and an alleged accomplice have now been taken into custody.

"Evidence gathered during the course of the investigation," FBI Charlotte said in a statement, "led agents and task force officers to identify Circe Baez as the woman who robbed at least four banks."

The FBI stated that they were nabbed at a hotel in Charlotte, N.C., on Sunday. Officers from the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department detained them "without incident," the FBI's Charlotte office said, and they are now detained in Pitt County.

"The pink lady is changing her trademark to an orange jumpsuit," the Pitt County Sheriff said in a Facebook post, praising the local and federal officials who achieved a "Great and quick outcome!"

Circe Baez, 35, and her alleged accomplice Alexis Morales, 38, have been accused of the string of robberies in Pennsylvania, Delaware and North Carolina.

The first happened in Carlisle, Pa., on July 20. A few minutes before noon, a woman entered the Orrstown Bank and passed the teller a note demanding money. "She was last seen leaving the bank on foot," the Carlisle Police Department said.

The suspects are accused of robbing a bank in Delaware's Rehoboth Beach three days later. They then allegedly traveled to North Carolina and robbed another bank in the center part of the state the next day. They then traveled about 180 miles inland to Hamlet, where they are accused of robbing the fourth bank.

According to the Pitt County Sheriff, Baez and Morales have each been charged with robbery with a dangerous weapon and two counts of conspiracy to commit robbery with a dangerous weapon. Those were charges for the two robberies in North Carolina. The FBI has stated that "both suspects are likely facing additional charges from other state agencies and perhaps federal charges in connection to the case."

It wasn't immediately clear what type of weapon the charges referred to.

It's not clear how much money the pair allegedly stole from any of the banks. The FBI was offering a reward of up to $10,000 for information about the case. Both suspects are currently being held on $4 million bond, according to the FBI.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Merrit Kennedy is a reporter for NPR's News Desk. She covers a broad range of issues, from the latest developments out of the Middle East to science research news.