(CNN) – Theodore John Conrad announced that he was working as a bank lender in Cleveland. At the end of his shift, authorities said the then 20-year-old stole $ 215,000 and went missing in a paper bag.
That was in July 1969, and today he stole $ 1.7 million, one of the largest bank robberies in the city. The United States Marshals Service said.
Now, for more than five decades, the Federal Security Agency announced Friday that it has identified the man who is considered one of the most wanted fugitives in the country.
According to officials, Conrad has lived in Boston since 1970 under the name Thomas Randall. In another dramatic turn, his house was near where the movie “The Thomas Crown Affair” was filmed. In the original film, the protagonist steals more than $ 2 million from a Boston bank.
“A year before the Cleveland bank robbery, Conrad was obsessed with the 1968 Steve McQueen movie,” the U.S. Marshals Service said in a statement. “The film is based on a millionaire businessman robbing a bank for a game, and Conrad … brags to his friends about how easy it is to withdraw money from a bank.”
Traces that have haunted the country for decades
The robbery allegedly committed by Conrad took place on a Friday. With him not coming to work until Monday, the bank is unaware of the magic of the money from the vault. Then the case cooled.
Over the decades, investigators have discovered Conrad’s whereabouts in various states, including California, Hawaii, Texas and Oregon. His case was featured in “America’s Most Wanted” and “Unsolved Mysteries”.
After years of investigation, federal officials traveled to Massachusetts last week to confirm he was leading a quiet life in Boston under a fictional name. As part of their research, they compared his documents from the 1960s to the documents he completed in Randall’s name, including the 2014 bankruptcy lawsuit in federal court in Boston.
He died of lung cancer in Linfield, Massachusetts in May this year, according to the United States Marshals Service. He is 71 years old.
A father and son helped solve the mystery
One of the main investigators in this case is Peter J. Elliott is an American sheriff from northern Ohio whose family lived near Conrad in the late 1960s.
“This is a case I am well aware of. My father, John K. Elliott, was a career sheriff in Cleveland from 1969 until his retirement in 1990,” he said. “My father did not stop looking for Conrad. He always wanted to finish the case until he died in 2020.”
Some of the documents discovered by Elliott Elder played a role in confirming Conrad’s identity, the son said.
“Today I hope my father relaxes a little easier, and his research … has closed this mystery that has lasted for decades,” said Elliott, Jr. “In real life, not everything ends like in movies.”
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