A new trend in bank security is the use of a credit card sized GPS tracker that can be hidden in a stack of cash. When the bank robbers steal the money, they will most likely not notice the GPS tracker between the bills, and get away with the cash and the tracker, giving police the exact location of the thieves. This is exactly what happened to three armed robbers (Timothy Rucker
, 33, Phillip Griffen
, 31, and Brandon Barnes, 25) when they robbed a TCF
Bank branch on Dec. 30th
. After pointing a gun at the bank teller and demanding money, they got away with about $9,000 and unknown to them, two tracking device which can broadcast GPS, cell-phone and RF signals that police can monitor using a Web browser.
About an hour after the robbery, the police tracked down the robbers to Rucker’s parent’s house, which was their meet up point. After entering the house, police found a small handgun in a clothing bin, and behind a freezer, a blue nylon bag with $8,789, and the two tracking devices. The last bit of missing cash, $250 was found in one of Barnes’ socks.
The use of GPS trackers in banks surfaced in Illinois banks about two years ago, said Illinois Bankers Association spokeswoman Debbie Jemison, and is so new that the association isn’t sure how widespread its use is. But Jemison said newer security measures such as these may be part of the reason bank robberies have decreased.