Crime & Courts

Man arrested in Intrust Bank robbery, hoax 911 call has history of making false reports

The man accused of making a fake bank robbery report Tuesday then actually carrying out the crime later in the day has a history of making hoax reports to 911.

Court records show Jeremy K. Vos, 20, has been on probation since September 2017 in a case where he lied to authorities about purported emergencies. Vos reportedly called 911 several times in 2016 and 2017 to report house and building fires, traffic crashes with people pinned inside vehicles, an armed robbery at an upscale downtown hotel, seeing a suspicious armed man and other events that never happened, according to a police affidavit released to The Eagle in May 2017.

He pleaded guilty to multiple felony counts connected to those calls about a month before he was placed on probation and has since had trouble abiding by the rules he was ordered to follow.

Vos — who authorities say also spells his last name Voss — was also arrested for making false reports in 2015, police said.

Wichita police spokesman Officer Kevin Wheeler said by email that Vos called 911 at 11:36 a.m. Tuesday to report a bank robbery that turned out to be a hoax. Less than two hours later, at about 1:25 p.m., he walked up to the Intrust Bank branch inside the Dillons grocery store at 5500 E. Harry and showed a teller a note that said he had a gun and demanded cash, Wheeler said. The teller turned over cash and Vos fled, Wheeler said.

Detectives and officers later received a tip that led them to Vos. He was arrested without any problems in the 1000 block of South Dalton, Wheeler said. Vos is being held in the Sedgwick County Jail. On Wednesday, he had a $1,500 own recognizance bond listed for the false reporting allegation and a $250,000 bond listed for the aggravated robbery allegation. He was also being held on a probation violation, online booking records show.

Vos was charged Wednesday in federal court with one count of bank robbery.

Vos’s criminal history stretches back to childhood, court records show. He has juvenile convictions for interfering with law enforcement, falsely reporting a crime and three counts of arson. His adult convictions include marijuana possession, false reporting, possessing alcohol while being underage and eight felony counts of giving a false alarm for the 2016 and 2017 fake emergency calls.

Court records show Vos has violated his probation multiple times, earning at least two “quick dip” 48-hour jail sanctions, most recently in June.

Hoax emergency calls have long plagued law enforcement, dispatchers and other first responders. But the practice gained international attention in December 2017 after online gamer Tyler Barriss’s fake report about a murder and hostage situation at a Wichita home resulted in the fatal police shooting of an unarmed man, 28-year-old Andrew Finch.

Falsely reporting serious ongoing crimes as a harassment tactic, especially in the online gaming world, is known as swatting.

Tuesday’s bank robbery is the second in Wichita in a week. It happened at the same time Wichita Police Chief Gordon Ramsay was speaking at a news conference that announced the launch of a local-federal partnership aimed at reducing violent crime in cities with rates well above the national average.

During the news conference, Ramsay said last week’s robbery of the Southwest National Bank at 3101 S. Seneca was the city’s first bank robbery of the year. That robber, described as an armed black man around age 40 who was dressed head to foot in dark-colored clothing, remains at large, an FBI spokesman said Wednesday morning.

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Amy Renee Leiker has been reporting for The Wichita Eagle since 2010. She covers crime, courts and breaking news and updates the newspaper’s online databases. You can reach her at 316-268-6644. She’s an avid reader and mom of three in her non-work time.