Robbery note spells destiny for suspect, prosecutors say

Prosecutors say a bank robber’s dreams of big-time heists were foiled by two critical mistakes — forgetting his misspelled note at one crime scene and wearing his company uniform at another.

Eric Munoz, whose recent court appearance was continued due to attorneys’ scheduling conflicts, will have one last chance to make a deal Tuesday before facing a jury trial April 18.

Munoz, a 41-year-old South San Francisco resident with a prior robbery conviction, is facing three counts of felony bank robbery in connection with two holdups in San Mateo and Foster City last summer. He remains in San Mateo county jail in lieu of $200,000 bail.

Wearing a yellow hard hat and armed with a note that read, “Bank Robbery, I Have A Gon [sic],” Munoz approached a teller at U.S. Bank in San Mateo on June 21, Chief Deputy District Attorney Steve Wagstaffe said. After allegedly taking $3,759, prosecutors say Munoz ran away — forgetting that he had left his note at the bank.

San Mateo police took the note to a crime lab, which reportedly revealed two of Munoz’s fingerprints.

On Aug. 10, Munoz allegedly struck again, this time entering a Lucky supermarket in Foster City.

Clad in a hard hat and an orange vest with his company logo emblazoned on it, the Cupertino Electric Co. employee allegedly robbed a teller at the Bank of America branch inside the market. Prosecutors say Munoz made off with $1,900, but not before the robbery was captured on videotape.

The following morning, California Highway Patrol officers located an abandoned car on U.S. Highway 101. Inside were the orange vest and a Polaroid photo of Munoz wearing his hard hat, according to Wagstaffe.

The robberies were part of a rash of holdups that shocked Peninsula residents and vexed police last summer. From June 21 to Sept. 10, there were 10 holdups or attempted robberies in San Mateo County banks. By August, the area’s 2007 robbery figures had already surged to nearly match the year-end statistics for previous years, according to FBI officials.

tbarak@examiner.com

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

Recology executives have acknowledged overcharging city ratepayers. (Mira Laing/2017 Special to S.F. Examiner)
Recology to repay customers $95M in overcharged garbage fees, city attorney says

San Francisco’s waste management company, Recology, has agreed to repay its customers… Continue reading

A construction worker watches a load for a crane operator at the site of the future Chinatown Muni station for the Central Subway on Tuesday, March 3, 2021. (Sebastian Miño-Bucheli / Special to the S.F. Examiner)
Major construction on Central Subway to end by March 31

SFMTA board approves renegotiated contract with new deadline, more contractor payments

(Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
Settlement clears path for all youth, high school sports to resume in California

John Maffei The San Diego Union-Tribune All youth and high school sports… Continue reading

State to reserve 40 percent of COVID-19 vaccines for hard-hit areas

By Eli Walsh Bay City News Foundation State officials said Thursday that… Continue reading

Neighbors and environmental advocates have found the Ferris wheel in Golden Gate Park noisy and inappropriate for its natural setting. <ins>(</ins>
Golden Gate Park wheel wins extension, but for how long?

Supervisors move to limit contract under City Charter provision requiring two-thirds approval

Most Read