FBI says he robbed 7 banks in Chicago and suburbs: ‘Hello, ladies. I would like to make a withdrawal.’

Haris Matchalovas is seen during a September 2022 traffic stop in Gurnee and during a bank robbery, according to the FBI | US District Court records

Federal prosecutors have filed charges against a Zion man who they believe committed seven bank robberies in Chicago and the suburbs over the past 11 months. 

Haris Matchalovas, 39, is formally charged with only one robbery, at a Huntington Bank just across the city limits in Evanston. But an FBI agent laid out details of seven hold-ups. Officials believe he took:

  • $4,118 from BMO Harris, 3113 North Lewis Avenue in Waukegan, on November 24, 2021
  • $13,525 from Parkway Bank, 39 North Morgan Street, on February 18
  • $7.973 from Huntington Bank, 9449 Skokie Boulevard in Skokie, on March 3
  • $1,843 from Fifth Third Bank, 837 West North Avenue, on April 22
  • $5,866 from Huntington Bank, 4042 West Foster Avenue, on May 10
  • $2,166 from Huntington Bank, 4355 North Sheridan Road, on June 11
  • $318 from Huntington Bank, 2485 West Howard Street in Evanston, on August 3

Matchalovas wore a surgical or cloth mask each time, carried a backpack, and wore distinctive grey gloves. The FBI agent said in a federal complaint that he displayed a knife in five robberies.

Among the evidence that allegedly links Matchalovas to the robberies, according to the FBI agent’s complaint:

  • Three getaway cars used in the hold-ups are registered to his parents
  • His phone pinged near each of the robbery sites within ten minutes of each crime
  • He wore a t-shirt “with the word ‘Champion’ written all over it” to the August 3 robbery, and the same shirt is seen in his Illinois driver’s license photo
Haris Matchalovas is seen wearing his favorite ‘Champion’ shirt in an FBI complaint. | US District Court records

Matchalovas began some of the robberies by making small talk, such as asking how much money was needed to open an account.

“Hello, ladies. I would like to make a withdrawal,” he told another bank’s tellers, “Give me your money.”

But Matchalovas threatened violence during some of the robberies.

“Do you want me to stab everyone in here?” he allegedly warned a teller at the North Avenue branch while brandishing a large knife. “Give me all your f*cking money.”

The FBI agent said that Matchalovas stole five cases of cognac from a Costco in the north suburban town of Mettawa about 40 minutes after the robbery on August 3. Store surveillance footage showed that he was still wearing the Champion t-shirt.

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