Law enforcement is a tough job, but sometimes a few dimwitted criminals come along that make a cop’s job a tad easier.

Bank suspect Brian Sallee/TPD photo

Such was the case this week with an afternoon bank robbery from a suspect who appears to have taken hairstyling tips from pop sensation Justin Bieber, and a brazen yet bumbling burglary attempt by suspects who perhaps could use some of those hairstyling tips.

Tucson police arrested the afternoon bank robber Oct. 27 while Pima County sheriff deputies nabbed a trio of brazen burglars Oct. 24, one of whom drove a forklift through a wall to enter a business and another who fought with a sheriff canine, according to news releases from the respective agencies.

The robbery suspect, a Bieber-banged young man, evidently didn’t have much sense when he decided to rob a bank.

In the middle of the afternoon.
In the middle of town.
With no weapons but a demand note – and very slow reflexes coupled with few observational skills.

The would-be robber also picked a branch of the Pima County Federal Credit Union at 3730 N. Stone Ave, a scant 4 miles north of Tucson Police headquarters.

As with many banks, the credit union was equipped with a hold-up alarm, which sends out a 911 to police that a robbery is in progress.

Police were on the scene within one minute to find the suspect still standing there at a teller window.

Brian Maxwell Sallee, 21, was arrested without incident and charged with one count of robbery.

Wesley Wallace/PCSD photo

At least Sallee’s alleged robbery attempt was a bit more subtle than an attempted burglary that went down days earlier when thieves blasted through walls with hammers and a forklift.

Pima County Sheriff deputies were called to the bumbling burglary in progress around 10 p.m. Oct. 24 at a strip of buildings in the industrial area of 3100 block of South Dodge Boulevard.

The exact location of the burglary must have been fairly evident when deputies arrived to find a hole cut through a roll up door.

Randall Gray/PCSD photo

The burglars entered the first business through the hole, went on to drive a forklift through an interior wall to get into a second business and then used hammers to bust through more interior walls to get into a third and fourth business.

“Extensive damage was done to the businesses and warehouse structure,” the release duly noted.

While the Tasmanian-devil approach to burglary may be absurd enough, one of the suspects made the arrest even more absurd by tangling with the sheriff’s canine when the dog found them hiding in crates.

Michael Fink/PCSD photo

Since all three were arrested, his tangling evidently did not pay off.

Arrested were Wesley Wallace, 46; Michael Fink, 48; and Randall Gray, 40. All three were charged with first degree burglary, felony criminal damage, felony theft and possession of burglary tools. The release did not note if they brought their own forklift.

Gray had the addition charge of harming a working animal tacked on for fighting with the sheriff’s K-9.

Best wishes for the canine’s speedy recovery – and the criminals’ speedy prosecution.


What do you think?

Are criminals getting dumber?