Overland Park Police investigate crime preying on people making cash withdrawals

Published: Sep. 4, 2023 at 8:54 PM CDT
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OVERLAND PARK, Kan. (KCTV) - The next time you withdraw cash, you might want to be careful where you go after that.

Just one day after a crime called “jugging” made headlines in California, it happened to someone in Overland Park.

The term is not brand new, but it was new to the people we met enjoying Monday in downtown Overland Park.

“Never heard of it,” said Lenexa resident Angela Fritschie.

“What is it then?” asked Overland Park resident John Milholm.

Police use the term to describe crimes where assailants stake out bank or credit union lobbies and ATMs, then strike after the customer has already left the premises, either breaking into their car or robbing them in person.

“Yikes, that’s pretty scary,” said Fritschie.

After all, most people by now know to be vigilant when at an ATM. They might be less watchful after they leave.

“I haven’t been to an ATM in a long time,” Fritschie said, “but I remember being like very aware of my surroundings, looking around me at that point, and then nothing else after that, right?”

In Texas this May a thief followed someone to a gas station, then smashed the passenger window and grabbed the cash as the victim was pumping gas.

Overland Park Police say the local theft happened in the area of 95th Street and Antioch Road at about 10:30 a.m. on Friday. The victim made a large withdrawal from a Bank of America ATM then drove to a nearby business and went inside. When they came out, their window was smashed and their money was gone. They say Olathe Police were able to arrest two suspects who are being held in jail pending charges.

Lenexa Police issued warnings about similar crimes not far away this spring and in 2017.

On Thursday, a California police department’s alert on Instagram offered some helpful advice.

  • Watch for people hanging around bank lobbies or parking lots.
  • Stay focused when inside a bank lobby
  • Put cash in a purse or wallet instead of a recognizable cash envelope.
  • Watch for vehicles tailing you from the bank.
  • If you suspect you are being followed, call 911 or head straight to the nearest police or fire station.