Robber compelled by hard times

Adam T. Hewins, in ballcap and yellow jacket, waits with police for witnesses who identified him as the man who tried to rob Timberland Bank, Feb. 17.               - Richard Walker / Herald
Adam T. Hewins, in ballcap and yellow jacket, waits with police for witnesses who identified him as the man who tried to rob Timberland Bank, Feb. 17.
— image credit: Richard Walker / Herald

POULSBO — A North End man handed a Timberland Bank teller a note demanding money Feb. 17. The bank teller declined and the man left.

He was arrested by police within a half hour on suspicion of attempted bank robbery.

Adam T. Hewins, 51, of Kingston told police he tried to rob the bank because he was on hard times, has been out of work, his rent is past due and he needed the money. He was booked into Kitsap County Jail on a charge of first-degree robbery. He was being held Thursday on $50,000 bond. His first court date is March 6 at 8:30 a.m.

Deputy Police Chief Wendy Davis said Hewins was arrested without incident. He did not have a weapon.

There were no injuries, according to Danielle Rowekamp, the bank’s vice president of risk and security. She declined to comment further. Timberland Bank is located at 20464 Viking Ave. NW.

The alleged attempted robbery occurred shortly after the bank opened at 9 a.m. At about 9:25 a.m., Timberland Bank called 9-1-1 to report that a man presented a robbery note demanding money, but that the teller had refused the demand and told the suspect to leave, which he did. The suspect was described as a white male, approximately 50 years of age, 6 foot, thin build, with a pony tail, wearing a blue beanie and a long sleeve black shirt.

Police officers from Poulsbo, Bainbridge Island and Suquamish responded to the area, with squad cars posted at 305 and Viking Avenue, Bond and 1st avenues, Fish Park, and Viking Avenue near the Stendahl Ridge entrance.

A man fitting the suspect’s description was arrested by officers near 305 and Viking. Police also seized a backpack. “The subject contacted was wearing different clothing from what was observed during (the) incident,” Davis said. “The bank staff was transported to the location where he was detained and they identified him as the robbery suspect. The suspect was taken into custody.”

The Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office K-9 unit also went to the scene to help locate potential evidence in the case.

Hewins appeared to be as cooperative with police as he was the teller. While waiting at 305 and Viking for bank tellers to arrive and identify him, officers removed his handcuffs so they could put a coat on him; he was wearing a T-shirt and it was chilly. At one moment, he smiled and conversed with an officer. Officers removed his coat and cuffed him again when it came time for him to get in the police car for the ride to the station.

During an interview at the Poulsbo Police Department, the arresting officer showed Hewins bank security pictures and the suspect identified himself and admitted he tried to rob the bank, according to the officer’s Statement of Probable Cause.

“He described the conversation that he had with the bank teller, which was consistent with the statement the teller gave me,” the officer wrote in the statement. “He agreed to show me where his discarded clothes were. We returned to the area of the bank. He showed me where he discarded his paper bag used in the attempted robbery, his discarded knit cap, and his discarded blue plaid shirt, which had the robbery note in the left breast pocket.”

The Statement of Probable Cause and the felony complaint filed in District Court state that the alleged crime occurred on Feb. 12; it occurred Feb. 17.

It’s the second time in four years that a Timberland Bank teller on Viking Avenue has been handed a robbery note. On April 28, 2008, Todd Prohaskey, 47, of Sequim was sentenced to 25 years in state prison for robbing the bank branch. Prokaskey slipped a bank teller a note demanding money and made off with a number of large bills. Prokaskey — previously convicted of bank robbery in California — led deputies on a three-county chase before officers used spike strips to stop his truck in Clallam County.

Law enforcement officials found $20, $50 and $100 bills believed to belong to the bank in the front seat of his truck, according to police reports.


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