Prosecutors say man robbed 16 banks across the state between February and April

King County prosecutors on April 24 filed a first-degree robbery charge against a man they claim robbed 16 banks in King, Pierce and Spokane counties between February and April of this year.

Among them, a Chase Bank in Auburn and banks in Kent, Covington, Renton, Lakewood, Des Moines, Puyallup and Tacoma.

What's more, prosecutors claim, during this span 31-year-old Robert Adams tutored teens on the do's and don'ts of his dubious vocation. But the teacher, authorities say, left his own fingerprints at the crime scene and didn't bother to hide his face.

By analyzing prints on the notes and noting the robber's habit of wearing similar or identical clothes during several of his robberies, investigators tied Adams to the crimes.

Adams is in jail on $750,000 bail. All told, authorities have six people in custody.

According to court papers, Adams swiped four Coach Bags worth $2,442 from an Auburn store at The Outlet Collection and brandished a pistol as he robbed a Subway sandwich shop in Kent.

Robberies in April throughout Pierce and King counties allowed police to connect them to three young people and two men.

Although the youth are 14, 15 and 16 years old, prosecutors have charged them with robbery as adults.

According to court papers, Kaution Starlin, 16, told police that he wanted a piece of the action after his 15-year-old cousin, Josiah Lane, boasted about making money from the robberies. Lane got involved through his stepfather, 31-year-old Vincent Thompson, and Thompson's friend, Adams.

The boys told police, according to court papers, that Adams taught them how bank tellers usually respond to robberies. He also said he would drive them to and from the banks. The teens would bring the money to Adams, who would then return a cut to them.

Cameron Bledsaw, 14, and Jeffrey Black, 27, have arrested as well and charged in connection with the robberies, according to court records.

Adams had three warrants for his arrest in separate cases and at least 17 juvenile and felony adult convictions.

Dan Donohoe, a spokesman for the prosecutor's office, said last Friday the department expects to file more charges against Adams.

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