11 of the FBI’s Most Amusing Bank Robber Nicknames

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Although names like these 11 criminals were given sound like they were created by Stan Lee, bank robbers' nicknames are actually coined by a real-world authority: the FBI. The nicknames are supposed to be a tool for helping catch crooks, but it seems as if they’re really cooked up to keep special agents amused.

1. Snowbird Bandit

If this were a comic book villain, the Snowbird Bandit would likely be able to turn into a dark-eyed junco—or perhaps have the power of ice-making, which is so useful at parties. In reality, this vault violator was simply an older male who was presumably retired from everything but bank robbery. Bizarrely, he was a former detective.

2. Paint By Numbers Bandit

In 2007, several suburban Chicago banks were held up by the Paint By Numbers Bandit, who had a boring, unimaginative approach to crime. It’s like his heart wasn’t even in it. Talk about mailing it in. Nah, just kidding. This guy earned his name because his black coat had some white paint on it, proving that one of the greatest risks of the klepto career track is receiving a hurtful nickname.

3. Sabbatical Bandit

It would be amusing if this reprehensible robber were a tenured professor who turned from scholarly research to armed robbery while on sabbatical. But he’s just a common plunderer who took four years off between robberies. What was he doing between knocking over banks? Building homes for the poor? Ministering to the sick? Giving money to banks in the Bizarro World? The world may never know.

4. Weathergirl Bandit

In DC Comics, the Weather Wizard has fearsome meteorological powers. But in the real world, the Weathergirl Bandit just liked to chit-chat about this and that, such as the weather, while committing robbery. Hey, who could blame her? Armed robbery is awkward.

5. Irreconcilable Differences Bandit

As described in a Los Angeles Daily News article, this pernicious pilferer “got his nickname from his first bank robbery on Dec. 22 in Beverly Hills, when he told a teller he was going through a divorce and needed help wiring money, requesting that the transfer be done in such a way that his estranged wife's attorney would not learn of it.” Dude, focus on stealing money. Being a terrible husband can wait.

6. Bucket List Bandit

This Missouri marauder earned his name after passing a teller a note with something other than a demand for cash: it said the guy only had months to live. That’s actually a pretty good angle. When making deposits, I’m going to start telling my bank I have various diseases and see if they slip me an extra twenty or upgrade my check designs.

7. Attila the Bun Bandit

No, this isn’t an alternative moniker for the Hamburglar. It’s just a poor, innocent—er, guilty—bank robber who happened to wear her hair in a bun when going on a thievery spree in 2006.

8. Good Grammar Bandit

This persnickety prowler sounds like one of those wackos who goes around correcting apostrophe use on signs. Alas, it’s just another heist hound. He didn’t correct the grammar of others, but when writing his trademark threatening notes, he was careful, clean, and grammatically correct. So even though this notorious nabber disappointed his family and friends, he made his English teachers proud.

9. Bubble Wrap Bandit

I want this creep to be more interesting than he is. Imagine a supervillain with the power to weaponize bubble wrap. That would be awesome.  But this boring brigand received his nickname because he was carrying a bubble-wrapped envelope during one of his sinister stick-ups. Still, I think Bubble Wrap Boy would make a great member of the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants.

10. Four Buddies Bandit

Shouldn’t that be Four Buddies Gang? Not really. It’s unknown whether this reprobate actually has any buddies or pals, much less criminal cohorts. But he definitely liked to claim, when committing convenience-story robberies, that he had “four buddies” outside. Special Agent Steve May gave him the nickname based on this claim, and it led to the allegedly quadruple-friended felon’s arrest, because he kept making the same claim over and over. (You can see why none of these lawbreakers have been named the Criminal Genius Bandit.)

11. Clark Kent Bandit

Like Clark Kent, this Baltimore baddie wore a suit and glasses. Unlike Clark Kent, he stole from local banks rather than leaping from tall buildings. This nickname is one of the more creative examples of an FBI tendency that’s perfectly logical: nicknaming a bandit based on appearance. Other clothes-based nicknames include the Sock Hat Bandit, the Forever Plaid Bandit, the Dust Mask Bandit, and the Muscle Shirt Bandit.