Bank robberies are up this year, says USA Today. The economy is driving some of this,” says Chris Swecker, chief security officer for Bank of America and former FBI official. “We’re even getting some anecdotal stuff from bank robbers.” The Los Angeles metro area has had 189 bank robberies this year, compared with 156 at the same time last year. In San Francisco, bank robberies jumped from 20 in the first five months of 2007 to 32 for the same period in 2008.
Bank robberies in the Houston metro area more than doubled in 2007 to 115, and the city is on pace to match – or break – that mark with 51 robberies already. Bank robberies peaked in 2001 with more than 10,000 nationally; the total declined after that, rising slightly in 2004, before increasing nearly 10 percent in 2006. On average, bank robbers make off with about $10,000 in cash, checks, and other property.