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Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Wheelchair-bound bank robber doesn't get far witness on hand for teens' murder trial, but another slipped away to Mexico

Friday, January 5, 2001

A wheelchair-bound former Storm Lake resident has been arrested for the robbery of a Lincoln, Neb. bank last Thursday, where several unwitting good samaritans actually aided in a getaway attempt.

Ray Mason, 43, got stuck in a snowbank as he fled the Wells Fargo Bank in Lincoln, and several bystanders helped to free his wheelchair and load it his van in the bank parking lot. Those who helped the suspect had no idea the bank had been robbed, according to Lincoln Police Captain Terry Sherrill.

The extra time it took Mason to negotiate the bank in his wheelchair and to load the wheelchair into his handicap-accessible Ford van, however, allowed witnesses to form a detailed description. Tellers copied down the license number before the van left. Mason was arrested at a nearby intersection minutes later.

Mason, now living in Polk City, Neb., had a clean record during his years in Storm Lake, with only one violation for running a stop light last summer on police records, according to local Police Capt. Bob Swanson. His record in Lancaster County, Neb. also showed no previous arrests.

Read the rest of this article in the 1/04 Pilot Tribune.

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