Woman suspected in Broward County bank robberies arrested

FBI says Chelsea Wilson, 24, had father drive her to most recent robbery

By Peter Burke - Local10.com Managing Editor

Chelsea Wilson, 24, of Hollywood, was arrested in connection with a TD Bank branch robbery in Fort Lauderdale.

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. - A Hollywood woman arrested in connection with a Fort Lauderdale bank robbery is believed to be responsible for three other recent bank robberies in Broward County, according to a federal criminal complaint.

FBI spokesman Jim Marshall said Chelsea Wilson, 24, was taken into custody early Friday. She is suspected of robbing a TD Bank branch Thursday on Southeast 17th Street.

According to the complaint, Wilson -- wearing black pants, a red wig, a hat and sunglasses -- entered the bank shortly before 4 p.m. and handed the teller a handwritten note demanding money.

"You have exactly one minute to give me all your $50 & $100 bills from both your drawers or I will shoot you! No dye packs, no alarms follow these instructions and no one will get hurt, act normal," the note read.

The FBI said Wilson got away with $300 in cash and walked through the parking lot. Surveillance video from a nearby Winn-Dixie showed her get into the passenger side of a waiting black SUV.

A wig-wearing woman also robbed a trio of Chase branches in Davie, Hollywood and Cooper City. According to the complaint, a citizen recognized Wilson as the woman from surveillance photographs of the robberies.

FBI agents watching Wilson's Fletcher Street home saw a black Jeep Cherokee that resembled the vehicle spotted in the surveillance video, the report said. The Jeep was registered to Wilson's father.

When authorities spoke to Wilson's father in private, he told them that he had driven his daughter to a job interview and waited for her to return, the FBI said. When she returned with a large amount of cash, he thought it was advance payment for her job, the report said.

Wilson admitted to robbing the TD Bank branch and the three other banks, saying she used the money to buy groceries, the FBI said.

Marshall said Wilson appeared in federal court Friday morning in Fort Lauderdale to face bank robbery charges.

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