The 12th-striker "Drifter Bandit" was sentenced Wednesday to 30 years in state prison for robbing tellers in four South Orange County banks. Michael David Marano, 46, Santa Ana, pleaded guilty Aug. 8, to a court offer to four felony counts each of second degree robbery and second degree commercial burglary with sentencing enhancements for eight prior strike convictions for four robberies and two assaults using a firearm in 1988, and two robberies in 1986.
On four occasions between May 3, 2011, and July 6, 2011, Marano entered banks in South Orange County and demanded money from the cash drawer from the teller by either announcing or presenting a note that he was committing a robbery. The defendant was armed at three of the robberies with a different weapon including a firearm, knife, and scissors.
The banks included a U.S. Bank in Dana Point, Citibank in Laguna Niguel, Chase Bank in San Juan Capistrano, and Farmers & Merchants Bank in San Juan Capistrano.
After stealing cash from the tellers, the defendant fled each scene on foot. The robberies were captured on bank surveillance videos.
On July 6, 2011, following his fourth robbery, the defendant discarded his shirt near the scene. Law enforcement recovered the shirt and linked Marano to the crime through DNA. The defendant was arrested July 8, 2011.
This case was jointly investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Orange County Sheriff's Department.
Deputy District Attorney Lynda Fernandez prosecuted this case.
--City News Service