by Brad Smith
ELK GROVE — (Feb. 25) The Elk Grove Police Department arrested a 41-year-old Citrus Heights man they believe to be “The Flannel Guy,” a bank robber who struck Elk Grove’s Downey Savings and Loan last Friday. Law enforcement officers also believe he has robbed three other banks.
“He was called ‘Flannel Guy’ because of the flannel jacket he wore during the first two robberies,” Officer Christopher Trimm, Elk Grove Police Department’s public information officer, said.
In a phone interview, Trimm said that the suspect, John Sandretto, was originally arrested on a warrant and felony narcotics charges.
“We had received information from a reliable source,” he said, “that (Sandretto) would be at a residence located in the 5500 block of Laguna Park Drive.” Late Wednesday afternoon, Elk Grove police officers started surveillance on the residence.
Shortly before 6 p.m., Sandretto appeared at the residence. At that point, Trimm reported, the parolee “was taken into custody without incident.”
Trimm said that Elk Grove police officers had “developed information” that Sandretto was responsible for the Downey Savings and Loan robbery.
“We also believed that Sandretto might have been responsible for other robberies,” Trimm said. The Elk Grove Police Department contacted area law enforcement agencies investigating the “Flannel Guy” robberies.
The other robberies were:
- The Union Bank of California at 1850 Douglas Blvd. in Roseville on Feb. 17, 2009;
- the Washington Mutual Bank at 3601 Fair Oaks Blvd. in Sacramento on Feb. 23; and,
- the Wells Fargo Bank at 2000 Douglas Boulevard in Roseville on Feb. 25.
Trimm said that an investigation “is on-going.”
He also urged anyone with information on the “Flannel Guy” robberies should contact the Elk Grove Police Department Detective Bureau at (916) 478-8060.