Police: Iowa men stashed bank robbery money in a tree

Travis Davis, Joseph Torrence O'Neill and Donald Kestner photos from Nodaway County Sheriff

Travis Davis, Joseph Torrence O'Neill and Donald Kestner photos from Nodaway County Sheriff

Travis Davis, Joseph Torrence O'Neill and Donald Kestner photos from Nodaway County Sheriff

Travis Davis, Joseph Torrence O’Neill and Donald Kestner photos from Nodaway County Sheriff

Three Iowa men, including two from Mt. Pleasant, are accused of robbing a bank in Missouri and hiding the money in a tree in Iowa.

Citizen’s Bank & Trust in Burlington Junction, Missouri was robbed at gunpoint just after 11 a.m. Friday morning, March 21, 2014.  Initial estimates indicated two masked men got away with about $10,000 when they fled in a getaway vehicle driven by a third man.

Bank officials later determined about $12,000 was actually taken.

A citizen followed the suspects’ SUV as it left town according to the Maryville Daily Forum.  Information from that citizen helped police find the SUV, which had Iowa plates on it, a short time after the robbery.  The SUV was abandoned just across the state line in Iowa.

Police from Iowa and Missouri searched for, and eventually found, three men they believe robbed the bank.  Police arrested 26-year-old Donald Kestner and 26-year-old Joseph Torrence O’Neill, both of Mt. Pleasant, Iowa, and 27-year-old Travis Davis of Fort Dodge, Iowa.  The men were reportedly apprehended a few yards south of the state line in northwest Missouri.

Days later, investigators found the money hidden in a tree in a wooded area on the Iowa side of the border.

All three men were charged with felony first-degree robbery and armed criminal action.  They were each held in the Nodaway County (Missouri) Jail in lieu of $100,000 cash-only bond.

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