Elderly Man Robs Bank To Escape Arguing Wife

Lawrence Ripple’s police booking photo. Credit: Wyandotte County Sheriff’s Office

Kansas City, Kansas — Lawrence John Ripple, 70, was charged with bank robbery and a variety of other felonies in federal court on September 7, 2016. Ripple was indicted for robbing the Brotherhood Bank & Trust on 756 Minnesota Avenue on September 2, 2016, in which he allegedly threatened a teller with a gun and demanded money.

The Brotherhood Bank & Trust location where the robbery occurred. Credit: Google Maps / Street View

But only minutes after receiving the money, Ripple took a seat on a bench in the bank’s lobby. When a security guard approached him, he handed the guard his ill-gotten gains and readily admitted that he was the robber. He then waited patiently for the arrival of police who took Ripple into custody. There is no evidence that the man actually had a weapon of any kind.

The Kansas City Police headquarters was a 2 minute walk from the bank. Credit: Google Maps / Street View

The bank is about one block from the Kansas City Police headquarters where Ripple was detained and questioned just minutes after the robbery. The motivation for the robbery was simple — Ripple wanted a place to escape from his argumentative nagging wife. He explained to police and FBI agents that he wrote the robbery note in front of his wife during a heated argument, and threatened to carry out the robbery if she didn’t stop arguing with him.

This map shows the short distance of the bank from the Kansas City Police headquarters. Credit: Google Maps

Ripple states that he saw arrest and jail as a reasonable and justified escape from a situation that he no longer could abide or tolerate. While details are yet not completely clear, it does appear that a recent argument with his wife and a continual state of bitterness between the two may have motivated the man to seek refuge in jail.

Ripple is currently waiting for his court date in the Wyandotte County jail. Reporters from the Kansas City Star attempted to contact his wife but were unsuccessful in getting her side of the story.

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