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Suspect in string of North Bay bank robberies arrested in Novato

Surveillance image from Middletown bank.

Published: Friday, March 29, 2013 at 5:10 p.m.
Last Modified: Friday, March 29, 2013 at 5:10 p.m.

An American Canyon man suspected of staging 11 bank robberies throughout the North Bay was arrested Thursday after a failed robbery attempt in Marin County.

Joshua Metoxen, 23, was arrested by Novato Police after a bank teller recognized him from a wanted poster distributed by the Lake County Sheriff's Department. Metoxen was wanted in connection with two robberies in Middletown.

A bank teller at the U.S. Bank in Ignacio triggered a silent alarm after recognizing Metoxen. He fled the scene and no robbery occurred.

He is a suspect in the Feb. 19 robbery of the same bank, according to Lake County Sheriff's Department investigators.

Metoxen is being held at the Marin County Jail on suspicion of robbery, attempted robbery and a Lake County arrest warrant of $750,000.

Also arrested Thursday was Jack Henry Dennis, 21 of Napa. Dennis was at the wheel of the car carrying Metoxen when Novato Police apprehended him. Dennis, who is also wanted in connection with the robberies in Lake County, was arrested on suspicion of attempted robbery.

“We are interested in him as well,” said Lake County Lt. Steve Brooks.

Metoxen is being linked to 11 successful robberies and three additional attempts, according to Brooks.

“I think other agencies are going to be stepping up,” he said. “He's not going anywhere.”

Lake County investigators believe Metoxen is behind the Feb. 27 robbery of the WestAmerica Bank and the March 7 robbery of the Tri Counties Bank, both in Middletown. Investigators credited citizens and businesses with providing video surveillance which helped identify Metoxen.

(Staff Writer Kerry Benefield writes an education blog at extracredit.blogs.pressdemocrat.com. She can be reached at 526-8671, kerry.benefield@press democrat.com or on Twitter @benefield.)

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