Giving names to bank robbers

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William Rehder spent three decades chasing bank robbers in Los Angeles for the FBI. Now he and Gordon Dillow have co-written a book about it, Where the Money Is: True Tales from the Bank Robbery Capital of the World. has an excerpt here:

Since at any given moment there might be thirty or forty unidentified serial bank robbers pulling jobs in L.A. — "unsubs" in FBI parlance, short for "unknown subjects" — I always gave them nicknames to keep them straight in my head, names based on some memorable aspect of their appearance or M.O. That guy who always disguised himself by wrapping surgical gauze around his head? I called him the “Mummy Bandit.” The one who for some reason always wore one glove during his robberies? He was the “Michael Jackson Bandit.” Two professional armed bank robbers who wore wigs and glasses and fake mustaches were the “Marx Brothers.”

Dillow is a columnist at the Orange County Register and former writer for the Times and the Herald Examiner.

Speaking of recent books, Connie Bruck will be the guest Wednesday on "The Treatment" with Elvis Mitchell on KCRW (2:30 p.m. on 89.9). She's the author of When Hollywood Had a King: The Reign of Lew Wasserman, Who Leveraged Talent into Power and Influence.

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