Engagement ring may be motive for 2 area bank robberies

An engagement ring may be the motive behind one of two recent Butler County bank robberies.

Dustin F. Pedersen, 36, is charged with aggravated robbery for allegedly robbing the Fifth Third Bank on Dec. 16. According to Trenton police, he presented his girlfriend with ring the next day.

West Chester police have also issued a warrant Pedersen’s arrest in connection with the Dec. 22 aggravated robbery of US Bank on Tylers Place Boulevard. He is being held in the Middletown Jail on $250,000 bond and is scheduled to be in court Friday.

MORE: Bond set at $250,000 for suspect in Trenton bank robbery

In an affidavit to search Pedersen’s residence on North Miami Street, Trenton Detective Sean Gill said a man robbed the bank wearing two-tone gray Columbia jacket, mirror sunglasses and an orange Titleist hat. The robber passed a torn piece of paper stating he wanted $20,000 and that he had a bomb strapped to him, according to the court documents. The man left with $8,800.

On Friday, the man suspected of being the same person, wearing the same jacket, a Titleist hat and white shoes with a black logo, robbed the West Chester bank. According to the court affidavit, the man also said he has a bomb strapped to his body.

Gill said numerous people called Trenton police stating Pedersen is the suspect in the robberies and pointing to his Facebook page that had pictures of himself wearing the same hat from both robberies.

MORE: Police looking for escaped Middletown teen making social media threats

“A search of his Facebook page confirmed that he does have pictures of himself wearing the same hats,” Gill wrote in the affidavit. “Mr. Pedersen gave his fiance … a ring on Sunday, a day after the Trenton robbery and (the fiance) stated that the ring was worth $5,000. Mr. Pedersen stated he paid cash for the ring.”

During questioning by Gill at the police station, Pedersen denied robbing the banks.

“Mr. Pedersen was asked if he had a blue Titelist hat and stated no,” Gill wrote. “I advised him there was one sitting in the back seat of his vehicle in the driveway and he asked for his lawyer.”

Taken from Pedersen’s residence were:

  • Zales box and ring
  • white gloves
  • blue Titleist Hat
  • white torn paper
  • 3 pens
  • misc paper
  • Zales business card
  • white Nike shoes
  • US currancy
  • Zales bag
  • cash receipts
  • orange sunglasses
  • handwriting samples
  • receipt

About the Author