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Rutherford bank robber left holding wig as hostage fled

Photo Credit: on end); Banco Popular, North Bergen
Photo Credit: on end); Banco Popular, North Bergen

YOU READ IT HERE FIRST : A bank robber identified as 49-year-old Luis Aparicio of Union City was in the vault of the Chase Bank branch in Rutherford, about to collect $47,500, when he heard the sound of police sirens, federal authorities said.

Aparicio was shot on sidewalk, right

He grabbed a woman in the bank and dragged her out as a human shield. But her hair was a wig, and she pulled loose from it and ran. Moments later, Aparicio was shot.

Aparicio, who had his first court hearing this afternoon while recovering from gunshot wounds, entered the Union Avenue bank with a briefcase and umbrella at 2 o’clock Thursday afternoon, a federal complaint filed in U.S. District Court in Newark says.

He put the briefcase down on a customer service desk, approached a teller who was busy with a customer, then pulled out what looked like a black handgun that he put to the customer service representative’s  neck, it says.

“I need the money. Don’t try anything stupid. I know how you operate,” he told the teller, according to the complaint. “Just give me all th e money.”

He then ordered the other people in the bank onto the floor and forced the customer service representative into the vault, it says.

She was giving him $47,500, the complaint says, when they heard the sound of police sirens.

“That was stupid to call the cops,” the robber told her. “You’re coming with me.”

Aparicio “had his arm around her neck with the ‘gun’ in his hand,” then led her out onto Wells Place where he was confronted by police.

Aparicio “changed his grip on the woman and grabbed her by the hair, at which point she pulled her head out of the wig she was wearing and she began to run,” the complaint says.

” ‘Drop the gun! Drop the gun!’,” towing operator Ron Cedola told CLIFFVIEW PILOT he heard a Rutherford police officer shout at Aparicio. “There was a pause of about 30 seconds or so and then I heard three shots — boom! boom! boom!

“Then there was a brief pause and I heard one more shot,” aid Cedola, has owned the towing service the past 42 years.

A specially trained sharp-shooter from the R utherford Police Department shot Aparicio in the neck, with either the same bullet or another grazing his back, a law enforcement source told CLIFFVIEW PILOT .

Aparicio has unofficially been tied to at least three other holdups, two in North Bergen and one in Clifton, all in the span of three weeks last year, CLIFFVIEW PILOT has learned. CLICK  HERE

Aparicio is believed involved in holdups at (l. to r.) Investors Bank, Clifton; Valley National, North Bergen (also photo on end); Banco Popular, North Bergen

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