Transient's unwanted money leads to his capture in Redwood City bank robbery

Courtesy PhotoKendrick Dorice Roby Jr. allegedly dropped small

Follow the money. That’s all Redwood City police officers said they had to do when tracking down a suspected bank robber last month who left a trail of stolen bills that had fallen from his bag.

Kendrick Dorice Roby Jr., 24, a San Mateo transient, was held to answer Monday on felony robbery charges related to the Oct. 22 heist at the BBVA Compass Bank on Woodside Road in Redwood City.

Two bank employees testified against Roby during a preliminary hearing Monday, San Mateo County District Attorney Steve Wagstaffe said. Meanwhile, the defense did not present any evidence, Wagstaffe said, leading the district attorney to believe the money trail offers pretty strong evidence of Roby’s guilt.

At 11:09 a.m. that day, police said, a man jumped over the bank counter and threatened employees with a simulated gun in his pocket. The clerks reportedly handed $3,064 to the bandit.

When police arrived, they found a trail of bills that led to a home nearby on Hudson Street. There, police said, Roby was reportedly found with the stolen money and a dye pack.

Not all the money had fallen out of the bag accidentally, according to prosecutors. Wagstaffe said he believes Roby only wanted to keep the higher-value bills and tossed the rest.

“He was walking away [from the bank] and looking in the bag, looking to see what he walked away with, and he wasn’t interested in ones and fives,” Wagstaffe said.

During that process of elimination, Wagstaffe added, other bills fell from the bag.

Roby remains in custody on $50,000 bail and is expected to return to court Dec. 4 for a Superior Court arraignment.

Before the heist, Roby had been paroled as part of California’s prison realignment, which let some inmates out early. Others were transferred to county supervision.

In 2008, Roby was arrested while trying to burglarize a car at a Shell gas station in Palo Alto. When officers detained him, according to Palo Alto police, he was in possession of stolen property from a separate case.

maldax@sfexaminer.com

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