FBI Identifies Suspect In Bank Robbery Spree - NewsChannel5.com | Nashville News, Weather & Sports

FBI Identifies Suspect In Bank Robbery Spree

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. - The FBI said it has identified a man suspected of robbing at least ten banks in Tennessee, the Carolinas and Kentucky.

The FBI's Knoxville office issued a press release saying an arrest warrant has been issued for 36-year-old Chad E. Schaffner, charging bank robbery and use of a firearm during a bank robbery.

The case amazes police because the robber is not concerned about hiding his identity.

"The photographs are as clear as a bell. There is somebody out there who has seen this man and knows this man," said TBI spokesperson Kristin Helm.

Schaffner is from the Indianapolis area and has been arrested before for bank robbery. He is considered armed and dangerous.

In the surveillance video the FBI said the man was casing a bank in Fletcher, North Carolina. It looked like he was talking on a walkie talkie, so he might have an accomplice. It was the second in a string of bank robberies.

Police said they started in Louisville, Kentucky in May. Then the spree continued with heists in North Carolina, South Carolina and then Tennessee. The Tennessee robberies happened just last week.    

"He engages the teller in conversation. Then he begins to threaten employees to get to the floor - very threatening, menacing," said Helm.

The billboard may not show it, but if you closely at the surveillance photos you'll see tattoos up and down both of his arms. The gun is a semiautomatic pistol.

"It's the same gun every time, points it at the teller, demands money and makes a quick exit," said Helm.

His bold crimes make the FBI believe he could be feeding a drug habit making him even more dangerous.

"So that makes it even more imperative to get this individual off the street before anybody gets hurt," said FBI agent Stephen Emmett.

The suspect may be driving a black GMC pickup with Tennessee plates or a red Chevrolet pickup with South Carolina tags.

The FBI credits his identification to tips received from an electronic billboard campaign that's been running for about a week in eight states.

If you have information about this case you can call the FBI or you can call Crime Stoppers at 74-CRIME. You can also text Crime Stoppers anonymously text the word CASH, and your message to CRIMES.

(The Associated Press Contributed To This Story)

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