Suspect Pleads Not Guilty in Bizarre Bank Robbery

UPDATE: A former USD football player and business owner was in court Friday, accused of robbing a bank.  This comes seven months after the crime happened.  It’s a case involving a bizarre disguise and a bomb scare.

The evening of July 26, 2016 was one that left the community of Yankton shaken up.

“That’s not really typical of Yankton, South Dakota.  This is just something kind of completely out of the blue,” neighbor Trevor Hickens told a reporter that night.

Police say right around closing time, 5 p.m., at Wells Fargo on Cedar Street, a man came in dressed in an old-man mask, long gray hair and a red hat.  He robbed the bank, left a suspicious package and told the teller not to call police for at least a half hour.  Then, he took off in a silver SUV.

When authorities got the call, they stayed on the scene for hours until the Sioux Falls Bomb Squad gave the all-clear– the package wasn’t an explosive.

Yankton police say the get-away car is how they linked 26-year-old David Giese to the crime.  His car matched the description of the vehicle involved.

Giese is well-known in the area.  In 2015, we aired a story about his new business venture, operating a food truck in Vermillion, the same town where he went to college three years earlier.  He played football for USD.

Yankton police say they’ve been working since November to see charges filed against Giese.  The FBI is investigating as well.  He was indicted by a federal grand jury for bank robbery on Tuesday, Feburary 14, and pleaded not guilty when he showed up to court in Sioux Falls Friday.

Giese was released on bond and a trial date still needs to be set.  If convicted, Giese could spend up to 25 years behind bars.

Yankton police say Giese could also be charged with a felony for animal cruelty in a separate case that happened back in October, where a dog was stabbed to death.


Earlier we reported…

United States Attorney Randolph J. Seiler announced that a Yankton man has been indicted by a federal grand jury for Bank Robbery.

David William Giese, age 26, was indicted on February 14, 2017. He appeared before U.S. Judge Veronica L. Duffy on February 17, 2017, and pled not guilty to the Indictment.

The maximum penalty upon conviction is up to 25 years in custody and/or a $250,000 fine, 5 years of supervised release, and $100 to the Federal Crime Victims Fund. Restitution may also be ordered.

The indictment alleges that, Giese entered the Wells Fargo Bank in Yankton, on July 26, 2016, and demanded money from the teller. Yankton police say he left a suspicious package and told the employee to not call law enforcement.

The charge is merely an accusation and Giese is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.

“The charges today are the result of close collaboration by the FBI and our law enforcement partners.” said Special Agent in Charge Richard T. Thornton of the Minneapolis FBI office. “We will continue to work tirelessly to ensure those who commit crimes such as this will be brought to justice.”

The investigation is being conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Yankton Police Department. Assistant U.S. Attorney Jeffrey C. Clapper is prosecuting the case.

Giese was released on bond pending trial. A trial date has not been set.

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