The affidavit says a man matching Beckstead’s description had handed the First Bank of Wyoming teller a note demanding cash and, speaking softly, said, “I’m here to rob you, give me all your 100s and 50s.”
He walked away from the downtown Cody location with $3,350, including a “bait pack” of money with recorded serial numbers.
That robbery followed an aborted robbery attempt earlier that morning at Sunlight Federal Credit Union, also in Cody. In that instance, a man with a similar description handed a teller a note, reading something like “empty your drawer fast.” He left without any cash after the teller explained she had no money in her drawer, the affidavit says.
The reported circumstances were similar on June 15 at American National Bank in Cheyenne. The man, also matching Beckstead’s description, handed the teller demanding cash and left on foot with $2,836.
Donati said he later learned the Wyoming robberies resembled a June 9 robbery in Maysville, Okla., and a May 15 bank robbery in Ogden.
More information became available as police and the FBI in Oklahoma, Wyoming and Utah compared notes on all five incidents, eventually leading to a warrant for Beckstead that was issued Tuesday, and his arrest on Wednesday.
Donati’s affidavit also references a June 26 bank robbery in Columbus, Mont., where the suspect matched Beckstead’s description.
Beckstead had been released on a furlough from the Ogden, Utah jail for a May 8 dental appointment but never returned to jail, the affidavit says. He was being held on forgery charges.
A detention and preliminary hearing for Beckstead, where the evidence will be weighed by a judge and bond set, is scheduled for July 10 in North Dakota. He’ll remain in federal custody until then.
(CJ Baker contributed reporting to this story.)