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Published January 05, 2012, 07:31 PM

EGF Native Arrested in Connection to SW Minnesota Bank Robbery

WORTHINGTON, Minn. (AP) — A Minneapolis man who grew up in East Grand Forks is charged in a bank robbery in southwestern Minnesota as authorities investigate whether he is responsible for dozens of other bank robberies in the state.

By: Associated Press,

WORTHINGTON, Minn. — A Minneapolis man who grew up in East Grand Forks is charged in a bank robbery in southwestern Minnesota as authorities investigate whether he is responsible for dozens of other bank robberies in the state.

Mark Wetsch, 49, was charged today in Nobles County with aggravated robbery, terroristic threats and theft, all felonies.

Wetsch is charged in Tuesday's robbery of the Rolling Hills Bank in Brewster.

Prosecutor Gordon Moore says the robber used a fake gun to steal $1,800. The suspect was arrested by St. Peter police after he was seen in a vehicle believed involved in the holdup.

FBI spokesman Kyle Loven says authorities continue investigating whether the suspect is the serial bank robber dubbed the "Man in Black."

Wetsch has asked for a public defender. He remains in jail with bail set at $300,000.

Wetsch, the Star Tribune reported, was convicted and imprisoned in 2005 for defrauding a St. Louis Park, Minn., nursing home, where he worked as nursing director, out of $1.4 million.

According to the newspaper's website, Wetsch, then living in Chaska, used much of the money to finance his daughter's distance running training, including hiring a private coach and training trips.

Mark Wetsch's mother told the Star Tribune her son was released recently from prison in Yankton, S.D., where he had been on a federal parole violation. Wetsch was working on starting a home health care business, she told the newspaper.

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.

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