March 1997 Loomis Fargo robbery
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|March 1997 Loomis Fargo robbery|
|Date||March 29, 1997|
|Robbery incident summary|
|Bank name||Loomis Fargo & Company|
|Perpetrators||Phillip Noel Johnson|
Philip Noel Johnson (born April 26, 1955) was an armored car driver employed by Loomis Fargo & Company in Jacksonville, Florida. On March 29, 1997, Johnson pulled off what was then the largest cash heist in U.S. history, taking $18.8 million ($28.0 million today) from the armored vehicle he was driving.
Johnson overpowered two of his co-workers and left them handcuffed in different locations. He stashed most of the $18.8 million in a storage shed in Mountain Home, North Carolina, and moved to Mexico City.
On August 30, 1997, a U.S. Customs Agent at a border crossing from Mexico pulled a passenger from a bus bound for Houston, Texas, suspicious of his responses to her questions. Upon further investigation the agent found the identification offered by the passenger to be a known alias for Johnson, and he was arrested when multiple passports were found in his possession.
Independent of Johnson's apprehension, investigators were already following a trail of clues that led to the North Carolina storage shed on September 18, 1997. Approximately $18 million was recovered from the shed.
Johnson was convicted and sentenced to 25 years in prison.
- U.S. Public Records Index Vol 2 (Provo, UT: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc.), 2010.