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Old 06-18-2004, 02:11 PM
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Join Date: Apr 2002
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Post Crime-watch radio host charged in bank heist

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - He could always say he was doing research.

John L. Stanley, a convicted criminal who attempted to change his ways and became an author, radio host and consultant on crime prevention, was arrested Tuesday after police found him blocks away from a bank robbery, counting some of the $8,200 allegedly stolen.

The Dallas resident was being held today without bond and faces a detention hearing Thursday. His attorney could not be reached for comment.

Police investigating the robbery of a Commerce Bank branch in the Country Club Plaza shopping district said they found Stanley during a routine "area canvass" sitting in a car counting money.

Some of the money included traceable "bait" bills.

"For someone who is an expert on crime, or professes to be, he certainly made a lot of the mistakes he would advise others not to make," said police spokesman Capt. Rich Lockhart.

The FBI said it believes Stanley drove to Kansas City from Dallas and considered several banks before choosing the Plaza branch.

Stanley said on his publishing company's Web site that beginning in the early 1960s, he was charged and convicted of a multitude of crimes, including theft, stealing cars and passing bad checks.

After getting out of federal prison in 1989, he appeared to be trying to remake his life, using his criminal background and showman skills to become an expert on how to avoid crime.

College professors in Texas said Stanley took sociology and criminology courses and worked as a consultant to insurance companies.

In 2000, he self-published a guide to traveling safely in Mexico and was planning to publish his autobiography, Becoming Criminal, this fall.

He also was featured in The Dallas Morning News as host of a nighttime radio show called Crime Wise with John Stanley.

But one of his former college professors said he had heard from Stanley recently and that he seemed frustrated and leaning toward returning to the life.

"He said, 'I'll just go rob a store and get back in where I can survive,'" said Michael Lauderdale, a sociology professor at the University of Texas in Austin. "I regarded this as a probability but I hoped it was a faint probability."

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