Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Edmonton bank robber disguised as white man sentenced to seven years

(Feb 24, 2015, (EDMONTON))--An Ethiopian man who committed a carjacking and two bank robberies within an hour while wearing a realistic mask that fooled witnesses into believing he was white was sentenced to seven years in prison Monday.

In January 2014, Solomon Zemichael Teklie carjacked a woman at Northgate Mall, robbed a bank at Londonderry Mall, robbed a second bank on 97th Street, then was pulled over and arrested by police. During his 37-minute crime spree, Teklie was completely transformed by his elaborate disguise.

“To use the term ‘mask’ to describe what he wore is inadequate,” provincial court Judge Susan Richardson said. “The mask was akin to something an actor would wear to change their age or skin tone. It was a sophisticated piece of equipment.”

Teklie wore a winter cap and sunglasses over the mask to complete the disguise. “It’s uncanny how much it looks like a real person,” Crown prosecutor Carrie-Ann Downey said about the mask when Teklie pleaded guilty to three counts of robbery in January. Read more from Edmonton Journal »

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