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FBI arrest scarf-wearing suspect in at least 16 Phoenix-area robberies

PHOENIX — A Phoenix-area resident was arrested on Monday in connection to the robberies of at least 16 businesses across the Valley, according to the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

The FBI Violent Crimes Task Force arrested 26-year-old Kip Lessard at his home in Chandler, Arizona. The arrest was made without incident, the bureau said.

Lessard was charged in a federal criminal complaint with 16 robberies at banks, fast food restaurants, grocery stores and a pet store across the Valley.

The FBI nicknamed Lessard as the the Fashion-Forward Bandit because he wore odd outfits when committing his crimes.

The suspect began his crime spree in early August. His last crime was on Oct. 11.

The FBI said Lessard typically entered the business and pretended to be a customer before giving the employee a note that said he was robbing the place. He also showed a handgun and made verbal threats.

A majority of the crimes have been carried out in the East Valley. Four of them were along a six-mile stretch of Rural Road between Tempe and Scottsdale.

Lessard had also robbed banks inside grocery stores in the northwest Valley.

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