MONROE - Three Covington residents have been arrested in connection with a 2006 bank robbery in Monroe, according to the Monroe Police Department.
Detective Darryl Powell said the case was always open, but had gone cold until detectives were able to obtain information that confirmed what they'd always believed - that the alleged robbery was an inside job.
Arrested and charged with theft by taking were Monica Wyatt Andrews, 30, of 335 Pebble Ridge Drive; her ex-husband Nathan Andrews, 29 of 476 Oxford Drive, Oxford; and Christopher Tyrone Wyatt, 36 of 150 Branchwood Drive. Monica Andrews was additionally charged with making false statements and false report of a crime.
Powell said the robbery was staged at the Bank of America on West Spring Street in Monroe about 9:30 a.m. on July 8, 2006.
Bank teller Monica Andrews told authorities that an unidentified black man approached her window and gave her a note and a bag, Powell said, adding that the note said, "Give me all your strapped $100 dollar bills because I know where you live."
The wording of the note raised questions because Powell said anybody who was "not a bank person wouldn't know what 'strapped' means."
Additionally, Andrews had $27,000 in $100 dollar bills in her drawer.
"She wasn't supposed to have that much," Powell said.
The detective said video showed the man leaving in a white SUV.
"We investigated the case and lifted fingerprints from the scene. We interviewed all the tellers and (Monica) Wyatt (Andrews) was very suspicious," he said. "We were going to do a polygraph test on her, but it turned out we weren't able to do it because she was pregnant."
Powell said polygraph tests were unreliable when conducted on a pregnant woman because the baby's heartbeat could interfere with the sensors.
"The case was never closed. We had suspects in mind at the time and when further information came forward to us from other people talking about the case, we just took that information and ran with it," he said.
Monica Wyatt Andrews, who had since married and divorced her co-conspirator, was arrested at the Bank of America in Jackson where she was working; her brother Christopher Wyatt, who authorities believe presented the note to his sister, was arrested at his home with assistance from the Newton County Sheriff's Office; the ex-husband had warrants served on him at the Newton County Detention Center where he was being held on unrelated charges, including aggravated battery, financial identity fraud and child support default.
The money that was taken has apparently all been spent, Powell said.
"They went on a cruise, taking five or six people. They got married and she spent a lot of money on the wedding," he said.
Barbara Knowles can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.