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Police Arrest 71-Year-Old Man In Bank Robbery

August 7, 1988

UNIONTOWN, Ala. (AP) _ A 71-year-old man charged with robbing a small-town bank of $400 told authorities that was the amount he needed to pay his bills, police said Sunday.

James Luther Hogue of Marion works part-time as a painter and receives a monthly Social Security check, but still apparently did not have the cash to cover his monthly expenses, said Police Chief Robert Hester.

″He seems like a pretty nice fellow,″ Hester said.

Ernie Brady, president of Uniontown’s First State Bank, said a man with ″some white in his hair″ walked into the crowded bank lobby Saturday and gave a note to a teller.

″Give me $400 and nobody will get hurt″ was scribbled on the note, Brady said. The teller took the note to Brady, who walked out of his office to meet the man.

″I asked him if he was for real on this thing - I could see the tip of the gun sticking out of his pocket,″ he said.

Brady said he directed the man to the front of the building so he would be in the view of a surveillance camera and told the teller to give him the money.

The man took the money and fled, while Brady ran back to his office for his own gun.

When the man started to drive away, Brady got the attention of another driver who blocked the car with his pickup. Brady then held a gun on the man until Hester arrived.

The money was recovered and the gun was found under the seat of the car.

″He was so old I asked him why he did it,″ Hester said. ″He said that he needed the money to pay his bills.″

The man did not specify what kind of bills he owed, Hester said. Hogue remained in jail on Sunday.

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