|For Immediate Release
Case # 12HF1290 March 14, 2014
|Susan Kang Schroeder
Chief of Staff
MAN DUBBED “SNOWBOARDER BANDIT” SENTENCED TO OVER NINE YEARS IN PRISON FOR COMMITTING ROBBERIES IN RIVERSIDE COUNTY AND ORANGE COUNTY BANKS
SANTA ANA – A man dubbed the “Snowboarder Bandit” was sentenced today to two years in state prison for committing robberies in nine Orange County banks. He was sentenced Feb. 3, 2014, to seven years and eight months in state prison in Riverside County. The sentences will be served consecutively. Michael Brandon Franks, 31, Riverside, pleaded guilty in the Orange County case, Nov. 7, 2013, to a court offer to 10 felony counts of second degree robbery and two felony counts of attempted second degree robbery.
Franks pleaded guilty in Riverside County on Feb. 3, 2014, to four felony counts of burglary, three felony counts of robbery, and two felony counts of attempted robbery.
The People argued today for a sentence of 12 years in state prison for the robberies he committed in Orange County.
Between Dec. 20, 2011, and March 21, 2012, Franks committed 10 robberies and two attempted robberies at nine different banks in Orange County. The bank chains included Bank of America in Anaheim, Chase Bank in Laguna Hills and Laguna Niguel, Citibank in Irvine, two robberies at the Schools First Federal Credit Union branch in Anaheim, Union Bank in Newport Beach, US Bank in Irvine and Ladera Ranch, and Wells Fargo in Irvine.
In each of the cases, Franks carried out similar acts: entered the bank wearing distinctive headgear which included a motorcycle helmet or beanie and sunglasses, approached a bank teller, and slipped the teller a note which stated he had a gun and demanded money. He caused the tellers to give him the money out of fear. Franks took the money and walked out of the bank.
The case was investigated by multiple agencies including Anaheim Police Department, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Irvine Police Department (IPD), Newport Beach Police Department, Orange County Sheriff’s Department, and Riverside County Sheriff’s Department.
On May 4, 2012, IPD arrested Franks at his home in Riverside. At the time of his arrest, Franks had money fanned out in the passenger side of his vehicle, a ripped up demand note, and several used Band-Aids he used to cover his fingertips.