The Canadian Press - ONLINE EDITION

Police: US bank robbers who took 3 women hostage intended to kill

  • Print
Stockton Police Chief Eric Jones, left, speaks at a news conference about the investigation into a bank robbery Thursday July 17, 2014 in Stockton, Calif. Three bank robbers took three screaming women hostage as they made a getaway and waged a high-speed gunbattle with police that left three people dead and cars and homes riddled with bullets, authorities said. (AP Photo/Stockton Record, Craig Sanders) MAGS OUT

Enlarge Image

Stockton Police Chief Eric Jones, left, speaks at a news conference about the investigation into a bank robbery Thursday July 17, 2014 in Stockton, Calif. Three bank robbers took three screaming women hostage as they made a getaway and waged a high-speed gunbattle with police that left three people dead and cars and homes riddled with bullets, authorities said. (AP Photo/Stockton Record, Craig Sanders) MAGS OUT

STOCKTON, Calif. - A gang of U.S. bank robbers who took three women hostage during their getaway attempt and waged a deadly, high-speed gunbattle with police were heavily armed, had ammunition magazines taped or strapped to their bodies and intended to kill, police said Thursday.

Two of the robbers were killed Wednesday along with a hostage who police said was used by the only surviving suspect, 19-year-old Jaime Ramos, as a shield. Prosecutors anticipate charging Ramos with murder and special circumstances including kidnapping, robbery and burglary that could make him eligible for the death penalty.

"In my over two decades of law enforcement I have never seen or experienced this type of total disregard for human life," Stockton Police Chief Eric Jones said.

During the hour-long chase, two of the hostages jumped or were thrown from the stolen SUV. At least one had a gunshot wound. Both were expected to survive.

The drama began when the men held up a Bank of the West branch and took two bank employees and a customer hostage. It ended in a hail of gunfire after police shot out the tires of the getaway vehicle.

It was not clear whether the hostage who died — the customer — was shot by police or by the robbers.

Police said the other robbers, ages 27 and 30, were gang members. Police said that they recovered at least three handguns and an assault rifle.

Fourteen police cars and many homes along the chase route were peppered with bullets, Jones said.

Witnesses said the shootout that brought the episode to a close looked like a war.

"It sounded like five minutes of straight gunfire," Sam York told KCRA-TV.

When it was all over, the last hostage was found dead in the SUV along with one of the gunmen, police said. A second gunmen died later at a hospital.

Police did not say how much was taken in the bank robbery.

____

Associated Press reporters Lisa Leff, Terry Collins, Sudhin Thanawala and Daisy Nguyen contributed to this report from San Francisco.

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

LATEST VIDEO

Weather for final Fringing weekend

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • MIKE DEAL / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS 060711 Chris Pedersen breeds Monarch butterflies in his back yard in East Selkirk watching as it transforms from the Larva or caterpillar through the Chrysalis stage to an adult Monarch. Here an adult Monarch within an hour of it emerging from the Chrysalis which can be seen underneath it.
  • MIKE.DEAL@FREEPRESS.MB.CA 100615 - Tuesday, June 15th, 2010 The Mane Attraction - Lions are back at the Assiniboine Park Zoo. Xerxes a 3-year-old male African Lion rests in the shade of a tree in his new enclosure at the old Giant Panda building.  MIKE DEAL / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS

View More Gallery Photos

Poll

Should Winnipeg control growth to deal with climate change?

View Results

View Related Story

Ads by Google