Police mistake great-grandparents for bank robbers

Great-grandparents mistaken for bank robbers

OAK PARK, Ill. — A couple of great-grandparents were mistaken as bank robbers and swarmed by police after leaving the bank they are members of.

Ottis Dugar, 86, a Korean War veteran, and Demitri Dugar, 67, were leaving the bank and going to go to a Denny’s restaurant when they were stopped at gunpoint by police and detained for 40 minutes, WLS reported.

“(The police were) yelling, ‘Get out of the car. Put your hands up.’ And when I’m having a bad knee, I cannot get out,” Demitri, who was driving, told WLS. “They asked me, ‘Who’s in the car?’ I said, ‘My husband.’ ‘What’s his name?’ I said, ’It’s Ottis.' ‘Does he have a gun in the car?’ I said, ’No, we don’t have any guns.' ‘Well, if he’s got a gun in the car we’re going to shoot him.’”

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The couple were handcuffed and put into separate patrol cars while police determined they were not the suspects.

A teller from the bank arrived and told police the Dugars were not the suspects. They were released shortly later.

City officials apologized for the mistake.

“It was a case of mistaken identity based on the initial report of an eye witness,” The Village of Oak Park said in a statement. “A show-up was conducted at the stop and the witness continued to say the individuals were the ones seen leaving the bank. However, a teller from the bank brought to the show up corrected the information. The couple was immediately released and officers involved in the incident apologized for the mistaken identity. Officers also said the couple did not express any anger or concern about the incident, which all occurred within just a few minutes.”

It is unclear if investigators captured the actual suspects.

FILE PHOTO: A couple of great-grandparents were mistaken as bank robbers and swarmed by police after leaving the bank they are members of.
FILE PHOTO: A couple of great-grandparents were mistaken as bank robbers and swarmed by police after leaving the bank they are members of. (Robert Laberge/Getty Images)