A man charged with robbing a Bonner Springs bank Monday was arrested at Harrah’s Casino where he was known as a regular customer.
Timothy Karpovich, 39, of Kansas City, was charged in federal court Tuesday with holding up KCB Bank at 13010 Commercial Drive on Monday morning, according to a news release from U.S. Attorney Tom Beall.
Karpovich was arrested after police received a tip that the alleged bank robber gambled regularly at Harrah’s Casino in North Kansas City. A casino employee there identified the suspect from a surveillance image.
According to a criminal complaint filed in the U.S. District Court for the District of Kansas, FBI agents went to investigate a report of a bank robbery at 10:25 a.m. Monday at KCB Bank in Bonner Springs.
An employee told an FBI agent that the suspect approached her teller counter and gave her a handwritten note that read, “this is a robbery.” The note was written on an envelope with a black Sharpie marker. The bank employee said she complied with the note and handed over $1,052 in cash. The suspect then fled the bank on foot, the employee said.
No weapon was shown during the robbery and no injuries were reported, the Kansas City division of the FBI said in a news release. The FBI distributed four surveillance images of the suspect to media outlets following the robbery.
Later that day, a Kansas City police captain contacted the FBI, and said he received a tip that the suspect was Karpovich. According to court documents, the tipster told police that Karpovich was a chronic gambler at Harrah’s Casino in North Kansas City.
In an interview with an FBI agent, a casino employee said a friend showed her one of the surveillance images shared online of the bank robbery suspect, and the casino employee recognized the suspect as “Tim,” described as a regular gambler in the poker room. The employee said Tim had been in the casino earlier that day at around 2:50 p.m. and “bought in” using $10 bills.
Investigators compared the serial numbers of the $10 bills at the casino to the $10 bait bills from the bank robbery and found that 10 of the $10 bills that matched the bank’s bait bills.
A bank employee earlier in the day told the FBI that the suspected robber was given $1,052 in $10 bills and $2 denominations.
While authorities were inspecting the bills, court records said investigators learned that Karpovich returned to the casino. Karpovich was arrested there without incident on Monday night.
In an interview with FBI agents, court records said Karpovich admitted to robbing KCB Bank. He told authorities he was paid Jan. 19 but lost all of his money playing poker. He said he considered robbing a bank, and went through with the plan on Monday, a day he had off from work.
Authorities searched Karpovich’s vehicle, a white 1994 Lexus, on Monday night, court records said. They found $2 bills taken from the bank, the demand note and a blue jacket he wore during the robbery.
Karpovich was charged with one count of bank robbery on Tuesday.
If he’s convicted, Karpovich could face up to 20 years in federal prison.
Reporter Tony Rizzo contributed to this report.