Bank robbery suspect grabbed in Jackson|[01/09/07]

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, January 9, 2007

Circulated photo credited in arrest

A Jackson man was taken into custody at his home early today, brought to Vicksburg and charged with robbing two banks at gunpoint here Friday.

Levi A. Scott, 24, 325 Spanish Court, was picked up by agents of the FBI, Mississippi Department of Public Safety and Hinds County Sheriff’s Department at 7:30.

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Authorities said bank security camera images released to the press played a key role.

&#8220I can tell you that the photo that was released to the media directly resulted in phone calls to the (FBI’s) Violent Crime Task Force,” Vicksburg Police Sgt. Tom Wilson said.

Scott was brought to Vicksburg this morning and expected to have his initial appearance in municipal court Wednesday at 4 p.m., said Police Lt. Billy Brown. He’s been charged with two counts of armed bank robbery, and he was in the Warren County Jail with no bond set pending the initial court appearance.

Police believe Scott on Friday held up the main branches of BancorpSouth, 820 South St., at 11:37 a.m. and AmSouth, 825 Crawford St., Friday at 1:17 p.m. BancorpSouth is two blocks from the U.S. Post Office and Courthouse and AmSouth is just across Crawford Street. They are also within a block of City Hall and within two blocks of the Vicksburg Police Department.

The bank holdups were the first in Vicksburg since March 2004 and may have been the first multiple holdups in one day in local history.

Witnesses at both banks said the suspect passed a teller a note demanding money and that he was wearing a black, hooded sweatshirt with the lettering &#8220FUBU 05” on the back, a brown baseball cap and black pants.

Personnel at BancorpSouth reported the robber appeared to be holding a pistol under his shirt. They did not see one, but personnel at AmSouth did. Money was reported taken from both banks, but the amount was not disclosed.

While reports Friday differed on what the suspect was driving at the time of the robberies, authorities late that day were saying it appeared to be a gold General Motors vehicle, possibly a Pontiac. The earliest reports were that he was driving a maroon Pontiac. When Scott was arrested, police seized a red Pontiac Grand Prix.

&#8220We’re still processing (it for) evidence right now,” Brown said.

Because deposits are federally insured, bank robbery is a federal and a state crime. At some point, prosecutors decide which court system will accept the case.

In the March 30, 2004, robbery, 30-year-old Bobby Earl Wilson took $11,000 from Trustmark Bank, 1020 Mission 66. Wilson had been convicted of robbing the same branch in 1998 and had been released from federal prison six days before the 2004 heist. He was arrested by police about two blocks away, was convicted and is serving life in prison as a habitual violent offender.