The Eastern New Mexico News - Serving Clovis, Portales and the Surrounding Communities

By Grant McGee
The Staff of The News 

Bank robberies suspect arrested


Last updated 7/2/2022 at 12:04pm


The man suspected of robbing two Clovis banks will face federal charges, District Attorney Brian Stover said last week.

James Robinson, 50, was arrested Tuesday at a Mitchell Street convenience store after two Clovis police officers recognized his car as the one used in one of the robberies.

According to an arrest affidavit, Robinson is no stranger to law enforcement. Clovis Police Lt. Trevor Thron said in reviewing Robinson’s criminal history he had served time for a 1993 robbery in Lubbock and a 2001 aggravated robbery with a deadly weapon in Dallas. The Texas crimes motivated the FBI to take the Clovis cases, Stover said.

The first Clovis bank robbery was reported just after 10 a.m. June 17 at the Washington Federal Bank at Manana Boulevard and Prince Street.

The suspect approached the counter, took out a clear plastic bag and demanded the clerks put the money from their tills into the bag, court records show.

According to the arrest affidavit the suspect made off with $3,331.

The second Clovis bank robbery occurred at US Bank of Clovis, 2501 N. Prince St., on June 27.

A US Bank employee told authorities she recognized the robber as the same man suspected in the June 17 robbery by photos she had seen on social media.

The suspect made off with $18,508 from the US Bank robbery.

Witnesses said the suspect did not appear to have a weapon in either robbery. Witnesses also noted distinctive tattoos on the suspect’s neck, which helped police identify Robinson.

One bank employee said she followed the suspect after the robbery and saw him get into the driver’s side door of a black SUV.

Thron said he and a Clovis police detective visited businesses in the area from the vicinity of the US Bank to Manana Boulevard and looked at surveillance footage.

Bit by bit, officials built a description of the black 2018 Lincoln SUV with Texas plates that Robinson apparently drove from the US Bank robbery.

That SUV was spotted by two Clovis police officers Tuesday as they were northbound on Mitchell Street.

The officers made contact with the vehicle’s driver and noticed his features and tattoos matched those of the bank robberies suspect. Records show Robinson made a run for his SUV, but was apprehended by Capt. Robert Telles after a brief struggle.

After his arrest Robinson was transported to Plains Regional Medical Center where he was treated for high blood pressure and alcohol intoxication, records show.

Robinson was also found to be in possession of 26 grams of a “white crystalline substance” that tested presumptive positive as methamphetamine.

Robinson is charged with two counts of robbery, trafficking a controlled substance and resisting arrest.

The FBI did not respond to questions about the case.


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