Sunday, January 6, 2008

The Trenchcoat Robbers

I heard on NPR that a new FBI agent has been assigned to the fascinating case of DB Cooper, a man who in 1971 parachuted out of a plane with $200,000 dollars and was never seen again. The case has gone unsolved all this time, and the younger FBI agent has unveiled a new website to enlist people to help solve the mystery. Others have called and written in begging him not to solve it.

It reminded me of a story I read in the New Yorker a few years ago, which didn't end on such an intriguing note:

"Of the seven thousand one hundred and twenty-seven bank robberies in the United States in 2000, the average take was just twelve hundred dollars, and most of the thieves were eventually captured. Bank robberies tend to be committed by inexperienced and desperate people, but Bowman and Kirkpatrick always worked with remarkable preparation and restraint, and they never bragged about their successes. They operated for fifteen years, one year less than Jesse James and his gang, and they robbed an average of two banks annually-always in a different city or town across the Midwest and Northwest. "They're a throwback to the old days," one veteran F.B.I.agent told me." I hope we don't see anyone like them again." Bowman and Kirkpatrick were finally captured, but only after a number of small, uncharacteristic missteps, which resulted, in large part, from a middleaged desire to lead more ordinary lives."

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

that was excellent!