Man charged with robbing Lincoln Park bank

SHARE Man charged with robbing Lincoln Park bank

Surveillance photo of the man who robbed a Lincoln Park bank on Feb. 4, then fled in a cab. | FBI

A man has been charged with robbing a bank last month in the North Side Lincoln Park neighborhood.

John Ballard, 30, faces one federal count of bank robbery, according to a complaint filed March 15 in U.S. District Court.

About 1:15 p.m. on Feb. 4, Ballard handed a teller at the bank inside the Jewel-Osco at 2550 N. Clybourn a note which said, “be smart. give me the cash $100 $50 $20 no dye are gps are I kill who is nexts to me and it will be blood on your hands,” according to the complaint.

The teller took out some low denomination cash and handed it to Ballard, who took it, then stared at the teller, according to the complaint. The teller took out more bills and handed them over.

After the teller gave Ballard $685 in cash, he said “I’m sorry,” then left, according to the complaint.

Surveillance video outside the Jewel-Osco showed Ballard arriving and departing the store in a taxi, according to the complaint. Police contacted the driver, who agreed to be interviewed.

The taxi driver told police he was hailed at Michigan and Huron by a man who told him to drive to the Jewel-Osco at 2550 N. Clybourn Ave. and that it would be a round trip, according to the complaint. The driver waited for Ballard for five minutes outside the Jewel-Osco, then drove him to a Salvation Army.

Police obtained surveillance footage from inside the cab that showed Ballard, according to the complaint.

On Feb. 14, a man entered a U.S. Bank branch at 104 N. Oak Park Ave. in Oak Park and handed employees a pile of papers that he said he had found on a CTA Green Line train, according to the complaint. The papers included five U.S. Bank deposit/withdrawal slips, eight photographs, six social security cards, three debit cards, two health insurance cards and one Ventra card. One of the debit cards was issued to Ballard.

Three of the deposit/withdrawal slips were bank robbery demand notes, according to the complaint.

On March 10, Ballard was arrested by Chicago Police for an unrelated crime, according to the complaint. He admitted to the bank robbery.

Ballard, who is homeless, had his initial appearance in federal court on March 17 and was ordered detained, according to FBI spokesman Garrett Croon.

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