Stanislaus County Superior Court Judge Timothy Salter ruled that there was sufficient evidence to try Andrew Gonzalez, 24 of Merced, as the suspected “Band-Aid Bandit.”
A string of robberies was committed from June to October of 2008 by a person who usually wore a band-aid on their left cheek in over a dozen related robberies. The robberies occurred in multiple counties including cities such as Turlock, Ceres, Modesto, Manteca, Lathrop, Tracy, Sunnyvale, Santa Clara, and San Jose.
Andrew Gonzalez was arrested by the Turlock Police Department on October 30, 2008. The capture of Gonzalez was preceded by a stand off with the Merced County Sheriff’s Department and a six block foot chase.
Preliminary Trial testimony included several officers while some used his own words stating Gonzalez said “about time you guys caught me, I’m tired of running.” More officer testimony stated how Gonzalez said that the arresting officers were good because they caught the band-aid bandit.
While Gonzales with in jail, he had discussions with his mom speaking in code about where the gun was. Gonzalez supposedly was using the word “cookies” for the word “gun” as a conversation included talking about how the cookies were in the car and it could lead to “a cookie enhancement.”
After hearing the conversations between Gonzalez and his mother, Investigators received a second search warrant for Gonzalez’s car. Investigators found a loaded .38 caliber revolver hidden inside a computer tower in the trunk of his car.
Other evidence presented included a lot of video surveillance photos, fingerprinted evidence, clothing matching what was seen in the videos, plastic bags that were used in the robberies, band-aid wrappers, and a box of band-aids.
An April 24, 2009 arraignment is scheduled for Andrew Gonzalez. Gonzalez is facing eight counts of armed robbery with enhancement of using a firearm.
Because Turlock Police made the arrest, Gonzalez will be tried in Stanislaus County first. After Gonzalez’s Stanislaus County case proceedings are finished, he may then face charges filed by other counties if they choose to do so.