FBI: 'Reckless robber' killed in shootout

May 28, 2010 9:58:07 PM PDT
He was known as the 'Reckless Robber' -- a man wanted for at least 20 violent robberies across the state. It turns out he was the robber who died last weekend in a shootout with deputies. The FBI has been after the man it calls the 'Reckless Robber since November 2008. Surveillance pictures were taken in holdups at banks across Texas -- around Houston Dallas, Austin and San Antonio. Authorities were all but stumped as he changed disguises for each hit. His heist at a Bank of America just south of Sugar Land last Saturday would be his last.

Sgt. Everett Hargrave with the Fort Bend County Sheriff's Office said, "We're quite fortunate that things turned out the way they did and nobody else lost their life over it."

The only person killed then was the 'Reckless Robber.' He's identified now as 26-year-old Mouafak Kazzaz of Katy. With his death came his identity, and the FBI is now able to link him to 20 other bank robberies so far. He's getting no sympathy from bank customers.

Customer Terry Edmond put it simply, "You rob banks, you get caught. You can die."

Kazzaz came heavily armed Saturday with an AK47. Detectives say he fired more than 100 rounds out of the back of a van as deputies pursued. Deputy Charlie Scott was hit several times. One round grazed his head. Arwen McGaw, a mother of two, who happened to be driving by was also shot. She's still in the hospital.

"I was actually here when it happened," recalled eyewitness Tara Board.

Board was in the drive through at the bank during the robbery and says she's nervous now every time she comes to the ATM. She says it's scary that Kazzaz got away with the robberies for as long as he did, but takes this as a reminder that we must be vigilant in protecting ourselves.

Board said, "We do need to be aware of what's going on around us."

The FBI is looking at other unsolved bank robberies to see if they can link Kazzaz to them. They are praising the good police work of Scott and the other deputies.


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