Elderly man calls in school shooting, other false crimes, to distract police as he robs banks: Feds

On three occasions, a Michigan man called in fake emergencies to 911—including a school shooting—to divert police while he robbed banks at gunpoint, the FBI alleged.

William Francis Minore, 70, is facing federal charges for bank robberies that occurred at Huntington Bank on September 7, 2016, and Honor State Bank on April 22, 2015, and December 28, 2015. MLive reported that Minore is accused of using a hand grenade in one of the stick-ups.

An FBI complaint indicated that Minore is accused of the following:

  • September 2016: Minore allegedly called 911 saying that a gunman opened fire at a school, shooting his daughter and other people, before hanging up. The FBI wrote that the second call to 911 indicated that a man in a ski mask had entered a bank in Lake Ann. (Huntington Bank is located in Empire.) Minore is also accused of stealing a car 30 minutes before the robbery.
  • December 2015:  Somone, presumably Minore, reportedly told a 911 dispatcher that he was talking to his daughter when she was shot by her boyfriend. The FBI claimed that Minore said the boyfriend was still shooting.
  • April 2015: Minore allegedly called in three false calls in three different counties before allegedly robbing Honor State Bank. According to the FBI, 911 calls were placed for a gas station robbery in Benzie County, a grocery store robbery in Leelanau County, and a bank robbery in Grand Traverse County. (Honor State Bank is located in Benzie County.)

“The calls confirm that the robber is likely the same for all three robberies,” FBI special agent Larry Stewart Jr. said.

Additionally, people close to Minore told MLive that it was Minore’s voice heard on the 911 recordings.

Investigators said that some of Minore’s belongings were linked to the 2015 incidents. In particular, they found a World War II-era grenade that was similar to the one used in the Honor State Bank stick-up, 9 & 10 News wrote.

The news station reported that his handwriting was also linked to a sign he placed amid the robbery stating that the bank was closed.

Minore was charged in November 2016 with three counts of armed bank robbery and three counts of use of a firearm in furtherance of a bank robbery. However, state charges were dropped last week as it was revealed that the Michigan man would face federal charges, WPBN reported.

He is scheduled to appear in court on April 16.


[Featured Image: William Minore/9 & 10 News]