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Sock Hat Bandit is ID'd, Was Shot at During Chase, Is Now in Kenton Jail

For weeks he was known as the Sock Hat Bandit.

And now we know him as Brian Parnell.

The accused serial bank robber who hit more than ten banks in Kentucky, Indiana, and Ohio, was arrested after his latest hit, the 5/3 Bank branch on Declaration Drive in Independence.

Parnell, 31, allegedly robbed the bank in Independence and was then spotted on 3L Highway by Kenton County Sheriff's Deputy Jeremy Adams. The vehicle that Parnell was driving matched the description of a vehicle used to escape after a bank in Bellevue was robbed. According to a news release from Kenton County Sheriff Chuck Korzenborn, Parnell was using the vehicle to ram other cars in an effort to get through traffic.

Deputy Adams approached Parnell in the vehicle with his weapon drawn. According to the release, as Parnell's vehicle cleared traffic, he allegedly accelerated towards Adams who fired three shots.

Multiple cars on 3L were damaged by Parnell's actions.

Parnell, unscathed by Adams' gunfire, proceeded towards Covington, pursued by police, where he ultimately crashed his car into trees on Beech Avenue near Ninth District School. After a short-lived attempted to flee on foot, Parnell was taken into custody by a pair of Covington officers.

The suspect was then taken to the Independence Police station where he was questioned.

Parnell is now lodged in the Kenton County Detention Center where he is charged with first degree robbery, first degree wanton endangerment, first degree wanton endangerment of a police officer, fleeing/evading police in a vehicle, fleeing/evading police on foot, operating a motor vehicle on a suspended or revoked license, and first degree criminal mischief.

He is believed to have robbed banks in Bellevue, Hebron, and in cities in Ohio and Indiana. Many more charges are expected and the Federal Bureau of Investigation is leading the case.

Parnell is expected to appear in Kenton County District Court for arraignment on Friday morning. 

-Staff report

Photo: Brian Parnell (via Kenton Co. Detention Center)

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