A Kansas City man pleaded guilty in federal court Wednesday to robbing a bank on U.S. 40 in February, after which he got a haircut and changed clothes at a nearby barber shop in Independence.
Joshua A. Hoover, 34, pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court in Kansas City, admitting that he stole $5,800 from Arvest Bank in the 8900 block of U.S. 40, just west of the Independence border, on Feb. 22. He faces up to 20 years in prison and will sentenced at a later date.
According to court documents, Hoover approached a bank a teller and told her “Give me $5,800 or I'll shoot you in the face.” The teller retrieved that amount, counted the bills into a withdrawal envelope, and Hoover fled on foot toward Blue Ridge Cutoff.
Hoover ran to Stadium Cuts on Blue Ridge Cutoff. A barber there told police that Hoover came in out of breath, saying he had just run from work and wanted a haircut during his lunch hour. After having most of his hair and all of his beard cut off, Hoover purchased a hat for $20 and then changed clothes in the shop’s bathroom, the barber said.
Hoover later told investigators that he had stopped a person near the barber shop and requested a ride to an area near his house. As he was being dropped off, he gave the driver several $100 bills from the bank robbery.
After the FBI released photos of the robber, it received several tips identifying him as Hoover. Investigators soon learned Hoover had been seen at Ameristar Casino, and he was located there the next day and was arrested. He had $2,115 in cash, $2,000 in poker chips, a $1,000 gaming voucher and a preferred member players card.
According to court documents, Hoover said he robbed the bank because he had gotten into a financial jam after recently losing some jobs, took out a bad loan and had a chronically ill son at home. He said he intended to launder the stolen money at the casino.