ANDERSON — Police arrested a man Tuesday who is suspected of robbing two Anderson banks.
Dempsey R. Bowling, 43, of Middletown, was pulled over by sheriff’s deputies while leaving the McDonald’s across from Mounds Mall on Scatterfield Road, shortly after the First Merchants Bank was robbed.
When Bowling was brought into Anderson Police Department for questioning, he allegedly admitted to Tuesday’s robbery and to robbing the Ameriana Bank on 53rd Street near Scatterfield Road on Sept. 16, said Anderson Police Department spokesman Joel Sandefur.
According to Sandefur, at about 10:50 a.m. Tuesday, a man wearing a red baseball cap, mask, fake beard and a hoodie walked into First Merchants and handed a teller a note demanding cash. The teller complied and the man left with an undisclosed amount of money. Several witnesses told police they saw the man leave in a blue 2000 Chevrolet Malibu.
No more than 20 minutes later, the deputies near the McDonald’s noticed a Malibu identical to the reported getaway car and stopped Bowling.
“After a cursory search of the vehicle, everything matched the description, and they found all the evidence in his car,” Sandefur said.
Police connected Bowling with the Sept. 16 robbery of Ameriana Bank because that robber used nearly identical methods. That day, the robber dressed similarly and handed the teller a note. Sandefur said Bowling was cooperative and admitted to both crimes.
“We’re in the process of serving a search warrant on his house in Middletown, possibly collect some more evidence,” Sandefur said. “He said he just needed the money.”
Police don’t suspect Bowling in any other robberies, and he has no criminal record. Sandefur also said he believes the suspect acted alone.
Sandefur said Bowling faces preliminary charges of robbery, but the investigation is still pending.