Erica Anderson, 37, went into an Umpqua Bank branch in Grants Pass, Ore., on the afternoon of Sept. 20, and handed the teller a note demanding cash – with one special request, according to police.
“The note also instructed the teller to wait 15 minutes before calling law enforcement or else two kids wouldn’t make it home from school,” says Detective Sgt. Dennis Ward.
Anderson fled the bank with $1,300 with Joshua K. Deeter Tseu, 19, driving the getaway car, says Ward, and the officers who responded within minutes were baffled and concerned by the note, fearing children were in danger.
Instead, says Ward, "She didn’t want to be late picking up her kids.”
A resident who witnessed the pair’s getaway provided the cops with enough information to track down Anderson. She was arrested in her driveway, not long after picking up her kids at a local elementary school. Both her daughters were munching on ice cream bars when officers arrived at the scene.
Anderson reportedly appeared concerned about what might happen to her daughters following her arrest. “But I guess if she was really all that concerned about their welfare,” adds Ward, “she probably wouldn’t be committing bank robbery.”
Both Anderson and Tseu are being held on $50,000 bail and are charged with first-degree theft and second-degree robbery.
“We average between three and five bank robberies a year,” says Ward. “But I don’t think I’ve ever heard of anything quite like this.”