The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Local News

June 27, 2012

‘Fake Beard Bandit’ draws 11 years in federal prison

FORT SMITH, Ark. — An Oklahoma man nicknamed the “Fake Beard Bandit” for wearing a beard disguise while robbing banks in Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri and Oklahoma, including one in Joplin, is to serve more than 11 years in federal prison.

On Tuesday, a U.S. District Court judge sentenced 39-year-old Jason Day, of Tulsa, to 135 months in prison on nine charges related to robbery.

Day was arrested Aug. 26, three days after the robbery of a Liberty Bank in Fort Smith. He pleaded guilty in February to multiple counts.

Prosecutors said Day entered the banks wearing a large beard that was obviously fake. He demanded money while brandishing what police later learned was a BB gun that looked like a handgun.

Day was accused of taking an undisclosed amount of money in a robbery July 3, 2011, at Hometown Bank at 1429 E. 32nd St. in Joplin. He was seen leaving the bank in a newer model, four-door Volvo sedan with Oklahoma tags.

Day also was ordered to pay $70,500 in restitution and to serve five years on probation after he is released from prison.

Prosecutors say Day robbed the banks from June through August of 2011. Besides Fort Smith and Joplin, the banks were in Oklahoma City and Shawnee in Oklahoma, and Olathe, Kan.

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