FBI- 02/23/16 The masked criminal known as the Cyborg Bandit and, later, the Elephant Man Bandit was robbing Seattle-area banks at an average of more than two per month for an entire year before he was caught—in the act of robbing a bank he had already robbed. For investigators who routinely work bank robberies, the story of 46-year-old Anthony Hathaway, sentenced last month to nearly nine years in prison, is surprising in some ways but all too familiar in others. “In this particular case and in general, bank robbery is a crime of last resort,” said Len Carver, a detective with the Seattle Police Department and member of the FBI’s Seattle Safe Streets Task Force. “Occasionally you get a thrill seeker or a truly violent individual, but most people who rob banks are supporting an addiction of some kind—drugs or gambling—and they are desperate.” Hathaway’s addiction was to prescription painkillers and then to heroin. According to court records, he suffered an injury and became addicted to the opiate Oxycontin. After losing his job, he turned to crime to feed his addiction, and between February 2013 and February 2014, Hathaway admitted to 30 bank robberies. He sometimes hit the same bank multiple times. “Seattle has had many serial bandits over the years,” Carver said, “but Hathaway was prolific. He might top the list for sheer number of robberies in a one-year period.” During the holdups, which usually occurred late in the afternoon, Hathaway wore a mask and gloves. In the early crimes, he wore textured metallic fabric over his face and was nicknamed the Cyborg Bandit because the disguise was similar to that of cyborgs in science fiction productions. After that disguise began receiving too much media attention, he covered his head with a shirt and cut out two eye holes. That earned him the nickname the Elephant Man Bandit because of the similarity to a movie character of the same name.
What a demotion. Yea yea I get that this guy was just robbing banks to fuel his drug addiction, but once you pull of the first bank robbery and you’re highly addicted to heroin and Oxycontin, then that first bank robbery is the first day you become a career criminal pretty much. And I would like to think that your rep matters. Maybe you want to move on to bigger banks and you need your reputation to get the best in the business to pull of bigger bank heist. I mean this guy robbed 30 banks in a year!!! Bodhi and his crew robbed the same amount in 3 years. This guy was a record holder. I can’t even fathom in this day and age of anyone touching that record. Its like Gretzky’s point total. Now imagine if Gretzky wasn’t called The Great One. What if he was called the Steve Buschemi of hockey. When you achieve an accomplishment that rare, your nick name is your reputation. it becomes your signature. Your nick name begins stories. It can demand respect. Its how you’re remembered. To go from the name Cyborg Bandit to The Elephant Man Bandit is one of the great injustices in criminal lore, but only you are to blame. Maybe some how police had a lead with your chainmail face mask and you had to go with something new, but from there you just gotta up it too some Mad Villain mask or something. Not some throw away crew neck sweater with two holes in it. I have to at least believe drug addicted bank robbers think legacy matters, and his is ruined.