Cops: Bank robber tossed cash from car on chase

April 20, 2012 8:42:50 PM PDT
A man was taken into custody by police in Elburn, Ill., in connection with a bank robbery in LaPorte County, Ind., after a chase that covered more than 100 miles.

The police chase began with the robbery at LaPorte Savings Bank in Michigan City, Ind., according to an official. The suspect led county and state police officials through Indiana and into Illinois, continuing on 294 and then to I-88 into Kane County.

David Ziesel, 32, was apprehended outside a home in Elburn at the end of a pursuit that lasted an hour and a half.

Police in LaPorte County began chasing Ziesel shortly after an officer noticed his car matched the description of the get-away vehicle involved in a bank robbery in Michigan City. Authorities said when the robber arrived, the vault happened to be open and he got away with an unusually large amount of cash.

"They tried to conduct a traffic stop and in the process, the suspect fled and crashed into our deputy's vehicle," said Capt. John Boyd, LaPorte County Sheriff's Department.

Police from numerous jurisdictions joined the chase as the suspect drove toward Illinois on I-294. Along the way, he allegedly began throwing the stolen cash out of his window.

Members of the Plainfield East High School volleyball team, on their way to a tournament in Michigan, spotted the money on the side of the road and stopped to pick it up.

"We picked up close to $5,000," said Marissa Villarubia. "That was in a few minutes. There were 20s everywhere."

While tempted to keep the money, the students turned it over to a police officer down the road.

Police said others have also turned in cash they found on the side of the road along the route.

By the time Ziesel made it back home, there was no money left in the vehicle, police said.

"Nobody knew the guy," said witness Brad Hruza. "He was real quiet. Only had been here a couple months, if that."

"I saw a bunch of guys with guns coming out of cars," said witness Nora Murphy.

Police said they found a gun and clothes used in the bank robbery inside the suspect's vehicle.

The FBI, which is now handling the case, took Ziesel back to Indiana Friday night.

Police are asking anyone else who found money along the side of the road to contact them and turn it. It is considered evidence in the case.