GRAND RAPIDS, Michigan — A 70-year-old Michigan man has been charged with phoning in phony reports of school shootings and other emergencies to distract police while he committed bank robberies.
Federal prosecutors say William Minore used disposable cell phones to call in the diversionary reports while he robbed a string of banks in northwestern Michigan between 2015 and 2016.
In one episode in September 2016, Minore allegedly called 911 to report that “a man entered a school and shot his daughter, is shooting other people,” before hanging up and walking into a Huntington Bank in Empire, Michigan and sticking the place up, prosecutors said.
In other instances, Minore allegedly reported a gas station robbery, a grocery store robbery and a bank robbery to distract cops while he ripped off banks of his own.
At one bank hold-up, prosecutors say Minore produced a World War II era pineapple-style hand grenade to force employees away from a vault.
Minore faces three counts of bank robbery, and three counts of use of a firearm in furtherance of a bank robbery.