Police: 'Serial bank robber' from Baltimore charged in York City robbery

Edward Johnson

A man described by police as a "serial bank robber" in Baltimore is now accused of robbing one in York City, according to authorities.

York City Police said in a news release that Edward Omar Johnson, 35, was arrested Friday, March 22, on a robbery charge.

Johnson is accused of robbing the PeoplesBank at 1 W. Market St. about 1:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 16, the release states.

He fled with an undetermined amount of money before police arrived, according to authorities.

Robbery: Charging documents state Johnson entered the bank, approached an employee at the bank and hid part of his face.

When the employee asked him to remove the hood that concealed his face, Johnson threw a demand note, which asked for $100s, $50s and $20s with no tracking system, according to authorities.

"I got a gun and I will use it if any don't go my way so please comply and your day will be smooth," his note read in part, police said.

The employee opened a drawer, and Johnson reached over and grabbed the money from it, court documents state.

He then fled west on West Market Street on a bike, police said. 

Officers later found the GPS tracking device for the money discarded behind a dumpster in the area of West Clarke Street and Grant Alley, according to authorities.

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Investigation: While investigating the robbery, York City Police were contacted by authorities in Maryland, who were searching for a "serial bank robbery suspect" in Baltimore.

York City Police compared the demand notes used in those bank robberies and found that they were similar to the one used at PeoplesBank, court documents state.

Police learned Johnson was living in York City, and they received a tip that he was in the 800 block of West Mason Avenue, police said. He was arrested without incident, and police said they found another robbery demand note inside his jacket pocket.

When police arrested Johnson, he said he robbed the bank to support his drug addiction, court documents state. 

In addition to admitting to robbing the PeoplesBank, he also admitted to robbing several banks in Baltimore, police allege.

In a news release Monday, March 25, police said he robbed four banks in Baltimore.

Johnson has prior robbery convictions in Maryland, according to online court records.

He was taken to the York County central booking unit for arraignment Friday night. Johnson, of no fixed address, remains in York County Prison on $50,000 bail.

He does not have an attorney listed.

His preliminary hearing is scheduled for Thursday, April 4 at District Judge Joel Toluba's office. 

— Reach Christopher Dornblaser at cdornblaser@yorkdispatch.com or on Twitter at @YDDornblaser.