KANSAS CITY– A Kansas City, Mo., man pleaded guilty in federal court Wednesday to robbing Arvest Bank, after which he changed his appearance by getting his hair and beard shaved off at a nearby barber shop, according to Tom Larson, Acting United States Attorney.
Joshua Aaron Hoover, 34, of Kansas City, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Gary A. Fenner to the charge contained in a March 7, 2017, federal indictment.
By pleading guilty, Hoover admitted that he stole $5,800 from Arvest Bank, 8959 E. 40 Hwy., Kansas City, Mo., on Feb. 22, 2017.
According to court documents, Hoover approached a teller at the bank and twice demanded, “Give me $5,800 or I’ll shoot you in the face.” Hoover instructed her to place the money in an envelope, then fled from the bank on foot.
Hoover then ran to nearby Stadium Cuts, 3300 S. Blue Ridge Cut Off, Independence, Mo. A barber told police that Hoover was out of breath when he came into the business; Hoover told the barber he just ran from work and wanted to get a haircut during his lunch hour. Hoover had most of his hair and his beard cut off, then bought a hat for $20 and changed clothes in the business’s bathroom. Hoover later told investigators that he stopped an unknown person in the area of the barber shop and requested a ride to an area near his house; Hoover said he grabbed an unknown number of $100 bills from the proceeds of the bank robbery and gave them to the driver.
The FBI disseminated surveillance photographs of the bank robbery to local media outlets and almost immediately began receiving tips from both the public and law enforcement that identified the bank robber as Hoover. Hoover was located at Ameristar Casino, where he was preparing to attend a poker tournament, and he was arrested. Hoover had in his possession $2,115 in cash, $2,000 in poker chips, a $1,000 gaming voucher and a preferred member players card. Hoover told police officers he was afraid the serial numbers on the bills could be tracked and decided to exchange the money at the casino to receive clean bills that were not directly related to the bank robbery.
Under federal statutes, Hoover is subject to a sentence of up to 20 years in federal prison without parole. The maximum statutory sentence is prescribed by Congress and is provided here for informational purposes, as the sentencing of the defendant will be determined by the court based on the advisory sentencing guidelines and other statutory factors. A sentencing hearing will be scheduled after the completion of a presentence investigation by the United States Probation Office.