Man Suspected of Robbing Bay Area Banks is Arrested near a Trash Dump
Photo: Aklilu C. Asefaha
BERKELEY — Several agencies coordinated an investigation leading to the arrest of a man suspected of robbing banks in the San Francisco Bay Area. Aklilu C. Asefaha, 44 of Berkeley, was arrested in a rundown industrial area near a city trash dump.
Asefaha was identified by Novato detectives who obtained a warrant for his arrest. They distributed information about the suspect seeking assistance in locating Asefaha and his vehicle.
On February 8, Berkeley police located and arrested Asefaha, near the Berkeley Solid Waste Transfer Station. He was booked at Santa Rita Jail on suspicion of committing multiple bank robberies.
Authorities believe Asefaha is responsible for bank robberies in Alameda, Marin, San Mateo, and Sonoma counties. These holdups happened in Belmont, Dublin, Greenbrae, Novato, Rohnert Park and Santa Rosa.
At a Chase Bank in Novato, the suspect said he had a gun and demanded money from a teller. Though the apparently nervous suspect fled without taking the money. However, he did remember to take the cash at other robberies.
Novato police responded to the botched robbery on December 30. They quickly learned the suspect robbed other banks in Marin and Sonoma counties on the same day. More bank robberies followed in January.
Novato investigators worked with detectives from Belmont, Dublin, Marin Central Police Authority, Rohnert Park and Santa Rosa. It helped that the suspect dressed similarly for each robbery and drove a grey Ford Fusion.
The Alameda County Sheriff’s Office and Marin County District Attorney’s Office also assisted in this multi-agency investigation. Witnesses in various jurisdictions also provided information to authorities, which helped solve the case.