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Man arrested in Helendale bank robbery

Sheriff's release: Suspect was getting haircut

HELENDALE • A bank robbery suspect was arrested while getting a haircut on Friday, the Sheriff's Department reported in a news release.

A man walked into the Helendale branch of Mojave Desert Bank in the 15000 area of Vista Road on Thursday and demanded money from a teller.

As the teller gave the suspect money from the cash drawer, another teller called 911, according to the release from the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department.

Sheriff’s Deputy Malcom Page responded and conducted the initial investigation. Page and Detective Joe Catalano later identified a suspect.

Deputies found Edward John Mendez, 57, getting a haircut at a Silver Lakes barbershop on Friday, the release stated.

Deputies recovered evidence linking Mendez to the crime. He was arrested and booked at the Victor Valley Jail, where he was being held on $100,000 bail, the release stated.

Megan’s Law records show that Mendez is a registered sex offender with a last known address in Oro Grande. Mendez was convicted with sexual battery, according to the Megan’s Law website.

Laura Eimiller, spokeswoman for the FBI’s Los Angeles field office, said that the FBI also responded to the robbery and briefly aided in the investigation.

Staff writer Lynnea Lombardo contributed to this report.

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