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Aurora man pleads guilty to summer bank robbery

Miguel A. Ramirez / phofrom FBI.

Miguel A. Ramirez / photo from FBI.

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Updated: January 15, 2013 11:19AM

An Aurora man could be sentenced to more than five years in prison after pleading guilty to robbing a bank in downtown Aurora.

Rodolfo Roque-Torres, 29, of the 1100 block of Comet Drive, admitted in federal court that he robbed the PNC Bank branch at 77 S. Broadway. Roque-Torres, also known as Miguel Ramirez, could be sentenced to 51 to 63 months in prison, according to federal court records.

At 9:15 a.m. last July 14, Roque-Torres walked into the bank wearing a floppy hat with a zebra print on the inside, a gray shirt and glasses.

He put two things on the counter: a withdrawal slip with the words “all the money” written on it and a BB gun that looked real, the FBI said. When the teller could not read the note, Roque-Torres leaned over and whispered, “give me all your money,” according to court records. The teller took $7,107 from a drawer and handed it to Roque-Torres, who put the money in a gray plastic bag he had brought with him, according to court records.

However, the teller also included a GPS device and bait money — meaning the bank knew the serial numbers of individual bills. Using the GPS device, police were able to track the money to a Ford Bronco that was parked and unoccupied at a gas station in the 6500 block of Route 34 in Oswego, court records said. Through the window, a police officer could see a gray plastic bag with cash inside sitting in the center console, according to a criminal complaint filed in the case.

When officers spotted Roque-Torres in the store, he pretended to be talking on a cell phone, the complaint said. When he exited the store, he was arrested.

During an interview after the arrest, Roque-Torres admitted he had robbed the bank with a BB gun, ran from the bank, then got in a Ford Bronco he had parked nearby, court records said. He changed clothes in the car and stopped at the Oswego station to get gas, the FBI said.

Roque-Torres said he robbed the bank because he was desperate, according to the complaint. When police searched the car, officers found the floppy hat, the plastic bag and a note that said “all the money,” court records said.

According to court records, in 2001, Roque-Torres was sentenced to eight years in prison for aggravated discharge of a firearm. In 2005, he was sentenced to three years in prison for a Kane County burglary.

Roque-Torres is scheduled to be sentenced for the bank robbery at 9:45 a.m. Feb. 27.

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