Missouri man sent to prison for Shawnee bank robbery

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An Independence, Missouri, man was sentenced to more than eight years in prison for a 2022 bank robbery in Shawnee in which he stole about $3,000 in cash.

On Tuesday, a federal judge handed down a prison sentence of 100 months for Richard Ruston, 54, according to a press release from the United States Attorney’s Office for the District of Kansas.

Ruston robbed the First Interstate Bank, 10610 Shawnee Mission Pkwy., on July 20, 2022. He was convicted by a jury in November 2023.

Ruston threatened a bank teller, prosecutors say

According to court recors, Ruston entered the bank in July 2022 with his face and head fully covered by two bandanas. He was also wearing a long-sleeve shirt with a snake-skin pattern, sunglasses and gloves.

He approached a bank teller, lifted his shirt to display the black handle of an item in his waistband, which the teller believed was a gun, and told her, “Give it to me. Give it to me now,” court documents say.

The teller complied and gave him $2,974 in cash.

The robbery lasted no more than two minutes.

Several employees were present, but there were no customers in the bank at the time of the crime and no one was harmed, prosecutors say.

Ruston fled with the cash on a blue motorcycle, eastbound towards Interstate 35. The item in his waistband and money were never recovered.

Ruston’s arrest was a coordinated effort

In press release following Ruston’s conviction in November, U.S. Attorney Kate E. Brubacher said such crimes against innocent people deserve punishment.

“Richard Ruston subjected people, who were trying to earn an honest living, to unimaginable terror and angst because he chose criminal means to obtain money,” she stated. “Fortunately, due to the excellent investigation by law enforcement and the solid case presented by prosecutors, the evidence convinced a federal jury of Ruston’s guilt.”

Court documents credited the FBI and Shawnee Police Department for investigating the case, along with assistance from Merriam Police, Kansas City, Missouri Police and Liberty, Missouri Police.

Other Johnson County crime news: 19-year-old sentenced to 400 months in prison for Shawnee murder

About the author

Andrew Gaug
Andrew Gaug

👋 Hi! I’m Andrew Gaug, and I cover Shawnee and Lenexa for the Johnson County Post.

I received my bachelor’s degree in journalism from Kent State University and started my career as a business reporter for The Vindicator in Youngstown, Ohio.

I spent 14 years as a multimedia reporter for the St. Joseph News-Press before joining the Post in 2023.