‘Body Cam: Armed Response’ on Investigation Discovery details how law enforcement pursued bank robber Travis Tarrants across borders for almost five months between late 2021 and early 2022. In order to provide viewers a clear picture of the events, the episode includes surveillance camera footage and interviews with investigators engaged in the case. Here is everything we know about Travis and how he ultimately passed away in case you’re curious to learn more.
Who is Travis Tarrants?
A white-masked thief was seen on security footage stealing the People’s National Bank on 17th Street in Marion, Illinois’s Williamson and Johnson Counties, on March 1, 2022. He compelled the bank teller to hand over the money while armed with what seemed to be a black semi-automatic weapon, as seen on CCTV tape. The Marion police mapped his escape route using the nearby CCTV cameras. The police observed him boarding a 2005 Chevrolet Colorado pickup as he exited the bank on foot.
The detectives observed him getting into the truck but were unable to see the licence plate. However, they saw a number of distinguishing characteristics, such as rust on the rocker panel, damage to the rear bedside, and the absence of the driver’s side reverse rear light. The cops understood they needed to widen their search because the bank branch was near to the Interstate. On their social media accounts, they posted in-depth details about the robber’s car and the bank’s CCTV footage.
The programme described how the Marion Police Department in Indiana was approached by the Bloomington Police Department within days. On November 15, 2021, they reported a similar heist at the Old National Bank location on West Third Street in Bloomington, Monroe County, Indiana. The offender was discovered escaping in a 2005 Chevrolet Colorado vehicle after the Bloomington police looked through CCTV footage. The Bloomington policemen, as opposed to the Marion police, had more luck since they were able to clearly see the car’s licence plate.
When the authorities verified the truck’s licence plates, they found that Travis Shane Tarrants was listed as the owner. A day after the heist, a patrolling officer spotted Travis’ car on State Road 446. In response to his request for assistance, the police approached the suspect in the Fishin’ Shedd parking lot. He struggled and made an attempt to escape as law enforcement officers arrested and handcuffed him. Police sources claim that at one time, he was also observed snatching an officer’s pistol and attempting to remove it from its holster.
After Travis was taken into custody, the police searched his truck and discovered a black BB pistol that looked like the one used in the heist as well as camouflage gear that matched what the Old National Bank robber had been wearing. Travis was accused with armed robbery, attempting to disarm a law enforcement officer, and resisting law police with bodily harm based on the evidence found and his actions. His bail was set at $1,500 in cash and $15,000 in surety.
Travis was detained when the police discovered through a background investigation that he had previously served a five-year prison sentence for an odd stalking incident. He reportedly sought for a fourth-grade teaching position and a basketball coaching position in the Springs Valley Community Schools in Orange County in the spring of 2016 and was a previous director at the French Lick West Baden Museum in Indiana. When he was unsuccessful in landing the position, he began harassing and stalking the hired candidate and his fiance.
Travis tried to ship the couple at least four dead skunks and a raccoon between June and September 2016 by stuffing their carcasses into packages. Several of these items were seized by neighbourhood post offices before they could be delivered. He also vandalised their cars by using white spray paint to scrawl obscene and threatening remarks on the sides of the autos. Travis also made false but serious accusations against the chosen candidate by calling the Indiana Department of Child Services at least four times.
According to court documents, Travis accused the applicant of abusing a friend’s daughter and having sex with an underage student. By writing several letters, assuming the identities of minors, and distributing vulgar genital photographs, he also tried to fabricate false proof. According to reports, he admitted guilt to two charges of felony stalking when he was 40 years old. The two felony counts of intimidation for the threats and the two misdemeanour counts of criminal mischief were dropped as part of the plea deal in July 2017.
How Did Travis Tarrants Die?
Travis was ordered to report directly to the Wheeler Mission to take part in the Foundations Residential Programme after being discharged on his own recognisance during a hearing in January 2022. However, he failed to appear at his pre-trial hearing on February 15. On February 28, the probation office alerted the court that he had broken the terms of his pretrial release; soon after, an arrest warrant was issued. The police also discovered security video that showed him landing on Marion’s west side on February 28.
Travis’ 2005 Chevrolet Colorado truck was discovered abandoned in a parking lot close to the Montana state boundary by the Fontana, California Police Department as two law enforcement agencies in two states looked for him. They observed that the guy was presumably walking because his car had broken down. Multiple 911 calls alleging an armed robbery at a Bank of America at 15092 Summit Avenue in Fontana, San Bernardino County, at 1:28 the same day corroborated their suspicions.
Within minutes after receiving the distress calls, police arrived, and they learned from witnesses that the suspect had entered a Wendy’s restaurant nearby. Travis was allowed to leave the location of the fast food restaurant, so the officers built up a perimeter and waited outside for him. He apparently tried to exit the restaurant through the back, which led to a dispute with the authorities. According to Police Chief Billy Green, “Despite numerous orders from officers to drop the handgun, the suspect refused.”
“The suspect eventually emerged from the vicinity of the skip with the handgun and pointed it directly at four officers who were standing just to his north,” he continued. The shooting involving the officers happened at that time. The authorities later said that they discovered the weapon he had pointed was an airsoft gun. No one else was hurt in the event, and Travis, 45, was pronounced dead. An impartial joint investigation into the incident is being carried out by the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department and the California Department of Justice.
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