Parents of boy bank robbers dubbed as 'little rascals' turned them in, HCSO says

Jessica Willey Image
Wednesday, March 20, 2024
3 bank robbery suspects in custody, range from 11 to 16 years old
A group of kids ranging between 11, 12, and 16 years old were arrested after police said they robbed a bank in Greenspoint.

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- The three bank robbery suspects dubbed as the "little rascals" are now in custody, according to FBI Houston.

The trio made headlines when authorities shared on social media that they were wanted for allegedly robbing a Wells Fargo bank on the North Freeway and West Road in the Greenspoint area.

Initially, a witness told officials the boys appeared to be between 14 and 18 years old. But, in the arrest update, the FBI said they are 16, 12, and 11 years old.

"The age of the younger two, that's unusual for a bank robbery," Mike Schneider, a retired juvenile district court judge, told ABC13. "It's one of the first times I've seen that."

While FBI Houston released the surveillance photos, the case is a Harris County Sheriff's Office investigation.

According to HCSO, the boys passed a threatening note to a teller. They were believed to be armed, though they did not present a weapon, and they got away with an undisclosed amount of cash.

Once the photos were released, HCSO started getting tips from the public. Parents of two of the boys came forward and identified them, the sheriff's office said. The third boy was handled by a law enforcement agency following a fight and recognized. The sheriff's office said authorities recovered a weapon and a distinctive item pictured in one of the photos.

The "little rascals" are charged with robbery by threat, a second-degree felony.

"I was thinking either this was very low in sophistication or maybe an adult had something to do with this. That is not uncommon. Because kids have a punishment that is less severe, it is not uncommon for adult offenders to get them to commit crimes," Schneider said.

Investigators will not say if anyone else is involved or whether any cash was recovered.

Because they are minors, ABC13 is blurring the initial photos, and the FBI said their names and additional details will not be released.

If the allegations are proven true, they could face probation until they turn 18 or juvenile prison until they turn 19, according to one criminal defense attorney. The 16-year-old could also be certified as an adult, but it is not likely, he said.

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