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FBI: Reward raised to $35,000 to catch serial carjacker, bank robber

The ATF says he shot at least one person in the back during one of the carjackings.

TAMPA, Fla. — Investigators say they're trying to nab a man who has robbed five banks across two Florida counties in the last year.

Federal authorities say he's responsible for a series of robberies and carjackings in both Pinellas and Hillsborough Counties. And, they're raising the reward to catch him from $25,000 to $35,000.

Special Agent in Charge Daryl McCrary is helping lead the investigation on behalf of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. McCrary, who is assigned to the Tampa Field Division, says the unidentified man has already shown he's willing to be violent.

According to McCrary, the carjacker shot one of the drivers he approached in the back -- even though the driver was already complying and trying to get away from the car. The driver survived.

Authorities say that happened during one of two carjackings -- both of which happened, months apart, at a coin laundry facility on 4th Street North in St. Pete. And, investigators say those were on top of the five bank robberies he's believed to have committed.

"He will turn to violence very quickly...so we want to make sure we identify this person very quickly and get him off the street," McCrary told 10News.

Authorities say they've linked this man to bank robberies at the following locations:

  • October 22, 2018: MIDFLORIDA Credit Union, 825 West Brandon Boulevard, Brandon, Florida
  • February 22, 2019: MIDFLORIDA Credit Union, 3202 West Waters Avenue, Tampa, Florida
  • June 19, 2019: MIDFLORIDA Credit Union, 4300 Park Boulevard, Pinellas Park, Florida
  • August 27, 2019: Suncoast Credit Union, 3234 South Miller Road, Valrico, Florida
  • October 9, 2019: MIDFLORIDA Credit Union, 29383 US 19 North, Clearwater, Florida

A spokesperson for MIDFLORIDA Credit Union, where four of the bank robberies happened, said the business could not comment on ongoing investigations. 

"However, we are extremely grateful that no one was hurt during any of these incidents," the spokesperson wrote in an email.

The robber is described as a black man, 30-40 years old, 5-foot-10 to 6-feet tall and slender. He "wears a black and gray dreadlocks wig" and has "possible gold teeth," according to law enforcement.

McCrary says somebody must know this person. 

"We just need one person to come forward to get this person off the street," he said.

Several agencies are working together as part of a task force to find the man. They include the Clearwater Police Department, Pinellas Park Police Department, St. Petersburg Police Department, Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office, Florida Department of Law Enforcement, ATF and FBI.

 Anyone with information that could help investigators is asked to call the FBI Tampa Field Office 813-253-1000 or submit a tip by clicking here. You can also call ATF’s tip line at 1-888-ATFTIPS or submit a tip by emailing TampaFIG@atf.gov or calling Crime Stoppers of Tampa Bay at 1-800-873-TIPS (8477). Tipsters can submit an anonymous Crime Stoppers tip online by clicking here.

RELATED: Chicago officer wounded in shootout with robbery suspect

RELATED: Suspected Clearwater bank robber on the run

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