Donald Santacroce, 65, went into the bank and handed the teller a note that read, “Please pardon me for doing this, but this is a robbery. Please give me $1. Thank you.” The teller complied and asked the robber to leave, but Santacroce refused and told the teller to call the police.
The arrest affidavit stated the suspect sat in the lobby waiting for police to arrive and told victims at the scene that “they are lucky he didn’t have a gun because it was taking the police so long to get there.” The bank manager then ushered everyone present into a back room at the bank for their safety and locked the entry doors to the branch.
Man allegedly robs bank of $1 with the hope of going to federal prison https://t.co/pNDY9WUNMt
— TheBlaze (@theblaze) March 9, 2023
The bank manager locked the doors to protect employees while they waited for the police. When authorities arrived, they arrested Santacroce, who reportedly stated that he had committed the robbery to get arrested and sent to federal prison. According to the police booking affidavit, Santacroce said if he was not sent to federal prison, he planned to rob another bank and ask for more money the next time.
The police also discovered that Santacroce had recently been arrested for investigation of DUI and careless driving by the Utah Highway Patrol. He was driving at the time with a suspended license from Missouri. Santacroce was booked into the Salt Lake County Jail for one count of robbery.
Agents from the Salt Lake City FBI field office responded to help with the investigation.
Santacroce’s actions may have seemed harmless, given that he only took $1. Still, his behavior caused a disturbance in the bank and put people in danger. The bank employees were forced to hide in a back room until the police arrived, fearing for their safety.
The Salt Lake City Police Department’s swift response to Santacroce’s robbery attempt ensured no one was hurt. However, the incident highlights the need for better mental health support and stricter laws to prevent people with recent criminal records from reoffending.