Detectives looking for a man suspected of robbing a bank Thursday at an east Modesto shopping center found the suspect about four hours later in the waiting room of a Modesto hospital handing out money, a police spokesman said.
John Hankins, 42, of Contra Costa County was arrested on suspicion of bank robbery, Sgt. Brian Findlen said. He said Hankins was wanted for parole violations.
No injuries were reported during the robbery, which occurred about noon Thursday at Chase Bank in the Century Center on Oakdale Road, between Briggsmore and East Orangeburg avenues.
Modesto police detectives said the robber walked into the bank and approached one of the tellers. He indicated he had a gun and demanded money, Findlen said, but never brandished a gun.
The suspect then left the bank with an undisclosed amount of cash and last was seen running south on Oakdale Road.
Officers searched the area but did not find the suspect.
Police described the suspect as a white man in his late 30s to early 40s, standing about 5 feet 8 inches tall and weighing about 170 pounds.
The suspect had brown hair in a 5-inch ponytail, facial hair with a mustache and very yellow, jagged teeth.
Police said the suspect had a "dirty appearance" and was wearing a Raiders jacket, a green T-shirt with a white circular logo on the front, dirty blue jeans and sneakers.
Police released several photographs from surveillance cameras at the bank taken during the robbery.
Shortly after 4 p.m., detectives were in the emergency room at Doctors Medical Center on an unrelated matter when they spotted a man matching the suspect's description handing out money, Findlen said.
Hankins was giving money to hospital employees to pay for previous medical services, Findlen said. Detectives later recovered the money from the hospital employees.
Findlen said the detectives approached the man, but he put up a struggle. Detectives then pinned him to the ground and took him into custody.
He had some cash in his possession, but no weapons, Findlen said. Hankins later was identified as the man who robbed the bank, he said.
Bee staff writer Rosalio Ahumada can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 578-2394.