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REDDING, Calif. - A man suspected in a downtown Redding bank robbery early Thursday afternoon was located a short time later by law enforcement approximately 300 yards from the bank. Redding police officers say he had a Tri Counties Bank bag in his possession that had cash in it that they believe was taken during the robbery.
At approximately 1:11 p.m., Redding Police Officers responded to reports of a bank robbery at the Tri Counties Bank at 1327 South Street in downtown Redding.
Bank employees said the suspect demanded money from a teller and fled the bank with an undisclosed amount of cash.
The suspect was described as a white male, approximately 40 years of age wearing blue jeans and having bloodshot eyes.
Responding officers began checking the area for the robbery suspect. Officers located a subject matching the suspect description near the canal in the area of California Street and Waldon Street, approximately 300 yards from the bank.
The subject, Blaine Eric Fletcher, 55 years of Redding, was found to be in possession of a Tri Counties Bank bag and cash taken during the robbery.
Fletcher was interviewed by Redding Police Department Investigators and confessed to committing the robbery. He said he entered the bank and demanded money from the teller because people were trying to kill him. He admitted his conduct would have caused the teller to believe she was being robbed.
Fletcher is well known to Redding Police Officers, he has a lengthy criminal history with arrests dating back to 1993 for mostly theft and drug offenses.
Fletcher was booked into the Shasta County Jail for bank robbery.
This was Redding’s second bank robbery of 2019. Arrests have been made in both cases.
Nationwide, 2,700 banks were robbed last year. According to Redding police, suspects with substance abuse issues committed over 35 percent of those robberies.