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Robbery Suspect Stops for a Beer

November 18, 2002

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TAUNTON, Mass. (AP) _ Perhaps if he wasn’t so thirsty he would have gotten away with it.

Taunton police arrested a bank robbery suspect shortly after he popped into an American Legion two blocks from the scene of the crime for a drink.

``He stopped to have a beer after robbing the bank and that’s what did him in,″ Detective Dennis M. Smith told The Enterprise of Brockton.

Joaquim Grace, 28, entered the Bristol County Savings Bank on Wednesday morning, barged to the front of the line and threatened to shoot a teller and a customer, police said. No gun was shown.

He escaped with an undetermined amount of cash.

Police searched the American Legion after witnesses reported a man running there. The bar manager told police that Grace, a regular customer, had stopped in for a beer and that he appeared to be sweating. He called a cab and left, the manager said.

Police then went to Grace’s last known address, where they found the suspect and some of the stolen money. Grace denied robbing the bank but three bank employees identified him as the robber.

He was charged with armed robbery.

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