In a case seemingly ripped from an action movie caper, a suspect -- who is a 34-year-old black man -- has been charged with robbing nearly a dozen banks while disguising himself as an elderly white man.
Deron Williams, of Oakland, was charged Thursday with several felonies, including robbery, assault with a deadly weapon, vehicle theft and possession as a felon of a firearm and ammunition, San Leandro police Lt. Jeff Tudor said.
Williams is suspected of robbing or attempting to rob 11 Bay Area banks and was armed with a gun in most of those incidents, police said. During the robberies, investigators believe that Williams wore a "sophisticated mask over his face, giving him the appearance of an elderly white male," Tudor said. "It was a movie-quality mask."
Using DNA evidence obtained from items left at the scene, investigators have linked Williams to a bank robbery in San Leandro in October and a Hayward bank robbery in April that police interrupted, authorities said.
He is a suspect in at least five additional bank robberies in other Bay Area cities, but those investigations are ongoing, police said.
Authorities said they have security video of the suspect while he was dressed in disguise but do not plan to release it until the investigation of each case is complete.
Williams was taken into custody without incident around 5:15 p.m. Tuesday, when police found him walking in the 4100 block of MacArthur Boulevard, near
Detectives also discovered a stolen van that police said the suspect used in some of the robberies.
The arrest was the result of an eight-month investigation involving the FBI and multiple Bay Area police agencies.
Williams is being held on $1,350,000 bail at Santa Rita Jail in Dublin.
Anyone with information about the robberies can call police at 510-577-3278.
Contact Chris De Benedetti at 510-353-7011. Follow him at Twitter.com/cdebenedetti.