Monday, July 23, 2007
Capture of Mad Hatter Bandit a.k.a. James G. Madison?
No, the Ponytail Bandit was not captured. But the FBI thinks they got the "Mad Hatter Bandit."
(The two of them could have been Bonnie and Clyde.) Reports coming from Mount Laurel, New Jersey indicate that the FBI thinks they may have their man. James G. Madison is thought to be the serial bank robber known as the "Mad Hatter." James G. Madison, age 5o, was apparently released in 2005 after spending eighteen years in prison for the death of his girlfriend. (Madison was convicted of the January 1986 manslaughter of Terry Wells.)
Well's body was discovered in a suitcase rcovered from the Passaic River. Madison apparently struck Wells with a lamp during a fight. Madison was paroled in May 2005 after serving 18 years of a 40-year sentence. Madison was arrested this week on suspicion of robbing a Union Township bank. FBI Special Agent Sean Quinn believes the robbery to be attributed to the "Mad Hatter." Madison is to appear in U.S. District Court in Newark. 17 banks are believed to have been robbed by the "Mad Hatter" between last year and Sunday's robbery of a Bank of America branch. The most recent robbery netted $3,000. (Hardly a recipe to get rich.) The mad hatter was typically described as "a middle-aged man of average height and build. He sometimes wore a flannel shirt, sometimes a blazer. But he always wore a baseball cap, a fishing hat, or a military hat. (That is why he is the "Mad Hatter," silly. But this is no "Alice in Wonderland" story by Lewis Caroll.)
Sunday the robber wore a yellow baseball cap without any other disguise. A bank employee saw a black Nissan Altima's license plate. Madison's live in friend lent him her Altima on Sunday morning (apparently not to go to church.) When he got home, she saw him counting $20-, $50- and $100-dollar bills (maybe he got that from the church collection?) On Monday, they arrested Madison. The "Mad Hatter" was nearly apprehended after he robbed a Montclair bank in May. He threw the money in a storm drain when red dye exploded in the money bag. (Maybe this explains why the obese man really got stuck in the storm drain?) Madison may not be the Mad Hatter. There is always the chance that publicity sponned some copycat robberies.
The Star-Ledger of Newark apparently was the first to report this story.
As always, Madison is presumed innocent until proven guilty.