Police accuse man of setting fires and robbing a bank in Surprise
SURPRISE, Ariz. - Tips from the public have reportedly led to the capture of a man suspected in a bank robbery in Surprise.
According to police in the West Valley city, 29-year-old Israel Andrew Diaz also lit some cars on fire as a diversion.
Court documents claim Diaz started car fires at two locations along W. Bell Road by putting magazine paper and other debris under the rear of the vehicles, and using alcohol and a torch. The fires were reportedly used as a distraction to rob a Bank of America branch nearby.
At the bank, Diaz allegedly handed a note to the bank teller, demanding $2,500 and to not make scene, because people were watching from the outside. The teller was able to hit the panic button, and Diaz only got away with $1,800 after the money counter jammed.
Investigators were able to track down Diaz through tips and surveillance video from where he allegedly started the fires, tracking him to his home where police noticed bullet holes in his apartment in El Mirage.
Diaz told investigators he shot his gun with his girlfriend and kids in the home, because they were "out to get him”, and he was under the influence of meth. Diaz went on to confess that once he got home, he burned his clothes, but not the boots he allegedly committed the crime in.