This Stockton bank robbery is every bank customer and staff's nightmare when three robbers entered the bank taking three women hostages. The hostages were two bank workers and one customer. The robbery then turned into a violent and deadly police chase. The hostages were whisked away in a car under gun point then involved in a chase with the police following in a high-rate of speed, according to USA Today on July 17.
The bank robbers took one of the bank staff's vehicles as their getaway car and during this high-speed chase they pushed the two women bank employees out of the car without slowing down. The third hostage, who was a bank customer, was used as a human shield by one of the robbers. This bank customer was killed in a shoot-out.
According to NBC News today, witnesses said that the gunfire looked like something out of a war movie. The bank robbers fired repeatedly at police during the chase. Two of the bank robbers were killed, putting the fatalities to three with the bank customer's death. The third bank robbery is in critical condition from gunshot wounds he got during the shoot-out.
The violent bank robbery started at about 2 p.m. on Wednesday when police responded to a branch of the Bank of West in north Stockton after they received a call about a robbery. The bank's security officer managed to call police before the robbers tied the man up. When police arrived the robbers were exiting the bank with the three women hostages.
They hopped into a bank employee's SUV, a vehicle the robbers stole. According to Stockton Police Officer Joe Silva, two of the three female hostages were bank employees and the third woman hostage was a bank customer who happened to be in the bank during the robbery.
Police chased the SUV with the robbers and hostages inside. The robbers consistently shot at police during this chase. The police chase lasted 45 minutes and covered over several miles, with the robbers pushing one of the two bank staff out of the vehicle while going at a high rate of speed. She was taken to the hospital suffering a gunshot wound and she is expected to live.
Towards the end of the pursuit, the criminals threw the second bank employee out of the speeding vehicle onto the highway. She too suffered a bullet wound and she is also expected to live. About two minutes after the second hostage hit the pavement, the vehicle stopped. Police continued to exchange gunfire with the gunman inside the vehicle.
When the shooting stopped, one robber was dead and the other two were in critical condition. Another robber died at the hospital, leaving one still alive, but critical. The woman bank customer hostage was also dead from bullet wounds. Police said it appears that the robbers used her as a human shield from the bullets riddling the car. More than a dozen police cars joined in on this high-speed pursuit.