3 armed men rob Union Bank on Hopyard Road, escape in stolen car

Bank customer injured as robbers make getaway with undisclosed amount of cash

Armed men held up the Union Bank in the Crossroads Shopping Center on Hopyard Road just after noon yesterday, with one jumping over the counter and emptying teller drawers.

Pleasanton police and the FBI are investigating what Lt. Mark Senkle called a "takeover robbery" at Union Bank at the Crossroads Shopping Center in the 4700 block of Hopyard Road just after noon. Usually bank robbers approach a teller quietly rather than commanding everyone's attention, he said.

Three men were involved in Tuesday's robbery; while one waited in a car outside, two -- at least one of them armed with a semiautomatic handgun -- entered the bank, Senkle said. One of the men vaulted the counter and emptied teller drawers and the pair was out in minutes.

The car involved, a Subaru Legacy, "was taken in a carjacking in Emeryville," Senkle said. He said that car was dumped in a neighborhood "not too far from where the robbery took place."

Police are examining the car for evidence.

A bystander was slightly injured in the holdup.

"A customer was pushed and fell down," Senkle said, adding that the man was not seriously injured.

Descriptions of the men vary because all three had their faces covered. Police are reviewing video camera footage of the robbery, but Senkle described all three as small in stature.

An undisclosed amount of money was taken. The FBI is involved because the robbery may be part of a string of holdups.

Senkle said Pleasanton gets several bank robberies a year, but rarely any of a potentially violent nature.

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Like this comment
Posted by John
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Dec 15, 2010 at 9:45 am

There seems to be a lot of crime in Pleasanton lately, but perhaps that is an impression based only on the news stories we read here. It would be interesting to know if this impression is reflected in the actual crime statistics, because, otherwise, we might be alarmed at an increase in such crime. Still, with the economy still in the doldrums, it isn't terribly surprising that crime might be on the increase, both within Pleasanton and from without...

Like this comment
Posted by Ain't seen nothin' yet
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Dec 15, 2010 at 10:50 am

Wait 'til BART opens that new western Pleasanton station right next to Stoneridge think shoplifting and armed robberies at the mall is bad now...just wait. The "Dumber than a box of rocks award" goes out to BART and Pleasanton city officials who never raised a peep of protest (that I'm aware of) to prevent it from being built.

Will be interesting to see difference in crime statistics year-over-year the first year after that station's been opened.

Like this comment
Posted by Amazon
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Dec 15, 2010 at 10:59 am

I actually think that the "dumber than a rock" award should go to people who get on these forums to whine and complain about something that already is a done deal, like the Stoneridge BART station opening. Instead, put your energy into something a)that is a positive and b)that can actually be implemented/changed.

Like this comment
Posted by Carlos
a resident of Highland Oaks
on Dec 15, 2010 at 11:17 am

Unfortunately Pleasanton is seen as an easy mark. Easy freeway in access in all directions is the reason. We'll just have to learn to live with it.

Like this comment
Posted by Harry Nutz
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Dec 15, 2010 at 1:21 pm


I think the "dumber than a rock" award should go to people that are always wanting a positive spin on things. A bunch of those folks get through life on weed and drugs. S**t flows downhill, so its better to build a diversionary system than to say "isn't all this s**t fantastic!"

As far as "what can actually be implemented", there have been a number of voices raising concerning Pleasanton devoting too much police resource to catching speeders doing 30 mi/hr in a 25 mi/hr zone, while serious crime is occurring. So, a practical change would be to redirecting resource to preventing serious crime.

It would also be a good idea to focus our energy on getting the dolts off the city council that go along with things like the Pleasanton West BART station.

Like this comment
Posted by AVHS Dad
a resident of Stoneridge Park
on Dec 15, 2010 at 1:41 pm

AVHS Dad is a registered user.

Dang. I make 2-3 deposits there a week for my company. I was there Monday afternoon.
It's a tiny branch, blink and you'll miss it, but the people there are sooooooo NICE!
I may bring a box of candy or something next time I go by.

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Posted by Amazon
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Dec 15, 2010 at 1:52 pm

Agree with you that there should be a focus on more serious crime versus going 5 mph over speed limit...and to your point, hopefully people are channeling energy into that issue.

re. my comment on this this situation, the robbers escaped in a CAR, not on BART. I don't know how this robbery article even had that posting about BART except that some people like to use this forum to present BART as a the "evil vehicle" who will bring in evil elements. Somehow I don't understand the logic in that argument due to 1) BART often runs late so it's not a great getaway vehicle, 2) there already is an existing BART station in Pleasanton - so if a robber wanted to use BART they already could. Therefore, I don't get the logic flow of those arguments except that the people who write that stuff must be territorial only about their part of town (assumedly near the new station) and not be interested in all of Pleasanton.

I prefer your pov to let's concentrate on more serious crimes - regardless of the transportation used.

Like this comment
Posted by unknown
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Dec 15, 2010 at 2:47 pm

It's Christmas time!!!!!!!!!!!!

Like this comment
Posted by Patriot
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Dec 15, 2010 at 5:28 pm


Pay your ticket and slow down. A lot more people die on are roads than in holdups.

Like this comment
Posted by Lucy McDonald
a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on Dec 16, 2010 at 1:49 am

So, does anyone know of any evidence at all that indicates this robbery was committed by "outsiders"? Sounds like a pretty professional job to me, done by people who appeared to be quite familiar with this small bank branch and the local geography. That suggests locals to me.

Like this comment
Posted by justsayin
a resident of another community
on Dec 16, 2010 at 10:03 am

Lucy, the car was stolen from Emeryville. I don't have experience robbing banks, but I'd say they probably stole the car locally and drove it out here? As opposed to.. walking? BARTing? out to Emeryville, grabbing a stolen vehicle and driving it back to Pleasanton.
That leads me to think it was committed by "outsiders."
Hopefully time will tell, though.

Like this comment
Posted by Concerned Californian
a resident of Valley Trails
on Dec 21, 2010 at 10:01 am

The urban thuggery who dominate the East Bay are expanding their enterprise to the Tri-Valley. Because this is where the money is. For the most part, crime in Pleasanton is by the freeway because of easy access - and yes, it's mostly committed by outsiders.

Now that BART comes to Stoneridge, the thugs will be able to shop/shoplift in Pleasanton too. Just look at BayFair Mall located by San Leandro BART - it exclusively caters to thugs, not families - with stores carrying mostly sneakers, and the latest in gang member fashions including "Stop Snitchin'" t-shirts.

And just wait until we get the Jerry Brown-mandated Section 8 housing!

Like this comment
Posted by truth
a resident of Birdland
on Dec 23, 2010 at 1:21 pm

after all the talk about cutting Police wages and retirement...maybe we should realize the great job they do. They will not work as hard for less money ..thats just common sense.

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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