LAKEWOOD, Colo. (CBS4) – Police arrested a suspected bank robber Monday morning after an unusual chase in Lakewood, and authorities say the man is wanted in connection with several other robberies.
Police say William Jennings, 48, robbed a First Bank near Wadsworth and Colfax just before 10 a.m. They say he then drove away to the west at speeds as high as 80 mph and was pursued by police to the Colorado Mills Mall area.
As he drove through the mall parking lots, authorities say Jennings began throwing money out the window of his red SUV.
One of the police vehicles involved in the pursuit was a motorcycle, and the Jefferson County deputy riding it had to be treated for non-life threatening injuries after it crashed.
A few minutes later in a neighborhood near the mall by Indiana Avenue and Archer Place, officers used a pit maneuver to block the SUV and it stopped after driving into the front yard of a home. At 11:15 a.m. police arrested Jennings and a CBS4 crew captured images of him being handcuffed and being placed in a police patrol car.
Homeowner Brad Evers heard the squeal of tires and then saw police arrest Jennings in his driveway. Evers says there are 22 children in his neighborhood, and had it not been a school day, the children could have been in serious danger.
“They play all up and down the street … and they play in our driveway, they’re all in our driveway,” Evers said. “He could have nailed six or seven kids easily. Thank God it was a Monday morning. Who knows what would have happened.”
So far it’s not clear if the suspect used a weapon during the robbery and it’s not known how much money he took. Police have recovered the money that was thrown from the SUV.
Police said Jennings was previously wanted in connection with several other bank robberies in the Denver metro area and also possibly a bank robbery in Washington state.