Where the Money Is: True Tales from the Bank Robbery Capital of the World

Where the Money Is: True Tales from the Bank Robbery Capital of the World

by Gordon Dillow, William J. Rehder
     
 

View All Available Formats & Editions

"With the style and pacing of a good novel...should become a standard in the genre."—Publishers Weekly
FBI Special Agent William J. Rehder, the man CBS News once described as "America's secret weapon in the war against bank robbers," chronicles the lives and crimes of bank robbers in today's Los Angeles who are as colorful and exciting as the legends of

See more details below

Overview

"With the style and pacing of a good novel...should become a standard in the genre."—Publishers Weekly
FBI Special Agent William J. Rehder, the man CBS News once described as "America's secret weapon in the war against bank robbers," chronicles the lives and crimes of bank robbers in today's Los Angeles who are as colorful and exciting as the legends of long ago. The mild-mannered antiques dealer who robbed more banks than anyone else in history. The modern Fagin who took a page out of Dickens and had children rob banks for him. The misfit bodybuilders who used a movie as a blueprint for a spree of violent robberies.
In a fast-paced, hard-edged style that reads like a novel, Where the Money Is carries us through these stories and more—all within a pistol shot of Hollywood, all true-life tales as vivid as anything on the big screen.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
With the style and pacing of a good novel, Rehder portrays the great variety of bandits he pursued in his more than 30 years with the FBI, almost all of it in Los Angeles. Reaching a peak in 1992 of 2,641 hits, the number of bank heists in the City of Angels is surprising, as is the small take on most jobs, often under a thousand dollars. The numbers raise questions about what motivates people to go into robbery, and Rehder wisely spends more time discussing the bandits, their psychology and their MOs than he does the minutiae of law enforcement. In fact, he repeatedly describes the FBI strategy as hoping the guy pulls another job and screws up this time. Rehder focuses on five main subjects: the most prolific one-on-one bandit (when a single robber holds up a bank teller) in history, a gang leader who ran takeover jobs using mostly kids, an unapprehended group that tunneled into a Hollywood bank, a bank manager who helped her policeman boyfriend get more than $700,000, and a pair of loners who died in a North Hollywood shootout. He fattens the package with innumerable anecdotes from other heists, as variations on a theme-and the pages turn quickly. Crime reporter Dillow is probably responsible for the gritty turns of phrase, but the book is entirely in the first person, and Rehder himself emerges from the beginning as a compelling and complex character. This should become a standard in the genre. (July) Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
Library Journal
Who knew bank robberies could be so interesting? This collection of essays centering on memorable bank robbers tracked-and in most cases captured-by retired FBI agent Rehder reads like fiction. Rehder was the bank robbery coordinator for the bureau's LA field office, and his expertise shines in this fascinating book. He shares many tricks of two trades, showing how bank robbers operate and how law enforcement tracks and, if lucky, captures them. Although Rehder assures readers that he reveals no trade secrets, a lot of seeming insider information is given. The final essay about the 1997 North Hollywood shootout contains a detailed filmography of great bank robbery movies. (The North Hollywood bandits were obsessed with the 1995 film Heat). This book is written in Rehder's voice, but the crisp writing is proof of coauthor journalist Dillow's contribution. The writing stumbles only occasionally-a few popular culture references are a tad dated, and some readers may wince at the excessive use of profanity. Of particular interest to public libraries and criminology collections.-Karen Sandlin Silverman, Lansdowne Friends Sch. Lib., PA Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Fast-paced, hard-boiled, anecdotal account of pursuing bank robbers, by a veteran FBI agent. Rehder must have kept copious notes about every bank robbery case that came his way during 30 years with the Bureau, because the details from pursuits dating back to 1966 are as fresh as if they happened yesterday. With help from newspaper crime reporter Dillow, he explains why he decided to join the FBI after graduating from law school in St. Louis, how he happened to draw the bank-robbery assignment while a rookie federal officer in Cleveland, and how circumstances enabled him to become perhaps the most knowledgeable law enforcer in the nation after his transfer to LA, which frequently leads the country in the number of bank robberies per year. While devouring Rehder's accounts of pursuing both amateur and professional perps, readers will become armchair experts themselves; before the end, he covers every imaginable classification of bank heist: the lone robber walking through the front door, sometimes with a loaded gun, sometimes with a pistol-shaped plastic toy; the technologically skilled rings using high-technology tools to drill through the floor from city sewers while the bank is closed for the weekend; the violent gang members financing their neighborhood operations by stealing cash from banks rather than selling drugs. To catch them, Rehder and his FBI colleagues sometimes put their lives on the line. More often, they sit at their desks and use their brains (and experience) to figure out where and when an at-large bank robber might strike next. Enough rich material here to spawn another night of TV crime drama. Law & Order: Bank Robbery Squad, anyone?

Read More

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780393325751
Publisher:
Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
Publication date:
06/19/2004
Edition description:
First Edition
Pages:
288
Sales rank:
802,806
Product dimensions:
5.25(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.65(d)

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >