Police: 'Shirt mask bandit' behind at least 16 NKY robberies arrested

Posted at 5:11 PM, Sep 21, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-21 18:03:00-04

ERLANGER, Ky. -- Erlanger police announced Wednesday that they arrested a suspected serial robber in Northern Kentucky.

Authorities believe that Steven Thomas, 35, could be the "shirt mask bandit" who committed 16 separate robberies with a T-shirt draped over his mouth to conceal his identity. According to the Erlanger Police Department, Thomas stands charged with first degree robbery and has been taken to the Kenton County Detention Center.

Locations of the robberies include the Petco store in Fort Wright, the Shell gas station on Buttermilk Pike, among others, according to Fort Mitchell Police.

In a Fort Mitchell city council meeting in August, Chief Matt Robinson said area police "stepped up" bike and foot patrols and "the now widely-known serial robber Shirt Mask Bandit is closer to being caught," according to a write-up on the meeting written by the River City News.

Police said Wednesday that the arrest was the result of a tip; they did not specify the source.