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‘Snowboarder Bandit’ Charged In Connection With 3 Coachella Valley Bank Robberies

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(credit: CBS)

(credit: CBS)

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INDIO (CBS) — Felony robbery and burglary charges were filed Wednesday against the alleged “snowboarder bandit,” who is suspected in three Coachella Valley bank robberies.

Michael Brandon Franks, 29, has already been accused of robbing nine banks in Orange County.

He pleaded not guilty to three counts each of robbery and burglary and one count of attempted robbery at his arraignment Wednesday afternoon in Indio.

Riverside County Superior Court Judge Thomas N. Douglass ordered Franks’ release after he entered his plea. Franks had been held at the Robert Presley Detention Center in Riverside in lieu of $500,000 bail.

He is due back in court June 27 for a felony settlement conference.

Franks, who was on the FBI’s most wanted list in Southern California, was arrested Friday at Brockton and Tequesquite avenues near his Riverside home, according to sheriff’s Deputy Angel Ramos.

He earned the moniker because of his youthful appearance and the knit hats and ski clothes he wore during the holdups.

Franks was charged May 8 in Orange County with 10 counts of robbery and two counts of attempted robbery in connection with 10 holdups at nine banks. He also was suspected of robbing a bank in Ventura County, according
to the FBI.

Franks was being held at the Robert Presley Detention Center in Riverside in lieu of $500,000 bail, according to jail records.

» RELATED: Police Hunt ‘Snowboarder Bandit’ In Orange County

» RELATED: ‘Snowboarder Bandit’ Changes Look, Strikes Again In Orange County

(©2012 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)

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