MEDFORD, Ore.– “Most of the time that behavior is a robbery… this is one of the few times it didn’t rise to that level,” said Lt. Mike Budreau, Medford Police Dept.
Two men are behind bars charged with attempted theft at a Medford bank on Tuesday morning.
Police had initially called it a robbery but now say they can’t find the note the suspect allegedly passed to the teller explaining this was a robbery. And since the suspect wasn’t behaving aggressively and had no weapon, robbery is off the table.
“We were close to proving a robbery just based on the way he acted, where he was, it was a bank, what he said,” said Lt. Budreau.
Lt. Budreau says it happened just after 10 am at Banner Bank on East McAndrews.
The suspect, 18-year-old Charles Fraser-Lindsey, allegedly gave the teller a note demanding cash. But police say she questioned it and he ran off without the money, taking the note with him.
“We’re not sure exactly what that note said,” said Lt. Budreau. “But we certainly believe it was a demand for money… implying a robbery.”
He says Fraser-Lindsey was also reportedly acting suspiciously at the US bank branch by the Rogue Valley mall that morning.
“We got a lot of tips but it was those few tips that were boom… those were the ones we needed pointing off the suspect,” Lt. Budreau said.
That allowed detectives to pull surveillance video of the getaway car and a license plate number.
Within a few hours, police found their car off South Pacific Highway in Phoenix along with the alleged getaway driver, 30-year-old David Martin Jr. Fraser-Lindsey was later arrested at his home in Central Point.
Both men faced a judge for the first time on Wednesday.
“Oh yea, I plead guilty,” said Fraser-Lindsey in court.
Fraser-Lindsey pleaded guilty, but then changed his mind and asked for an attorney.
“Quite frankly, I really haven’t warned you adequately about this,” said presiding Circuit Court Judge Lorenzo Mejia.
David Martin Jr. maintained his innocence and says he knew nothing about any alleged crimes.
“I just want to go home to my wife and daughter. I just gave my friend a ride,” said Martin Jr.
The two men are being held at the Jackson County jail on $75,000 bail.
They will be back in court at the end of the month.
Amanda Rose is a multimedia journalist for NBC5 News. Amanda graduated from Columbia University earning a Master’s degree in Journalism. She also received a Bachelor’s degree in English with a specialization in literature from the University of British Columbia. She’s a Los Angeles native, but is thrilled to return to the beautiful Pacific Northwest and is passionate about reporting on the criminal justice system.