A homeless man who robbed a downtown Berkeley bank and tried to escape on BART this week has a long history of bank robbery convictions, according to police and court records.
Alden Moore, 57, served more than 10 years in federal prison after a bank robbery conviction in the '90s, prison officials confirmed Wednesday.
In the months after his release from prison in 2005, he reportedly robbed a handful of other East Bay banks, the Bay Area News Group reported at the time. He was convicted and sent to prison again as a result, court records show.
And it wouldn't be his last time in trouble.
On Monday, Berkeley police were alerted to a robbery at Mechanics Bank, at 2301 Shattuck Ave., just before 1 p.m., police said.
The suspect gave the teller a note demanding money and claiming that he had a gun, Berkeley police said.
The man fled the bank with the money as police officers responded to the area to search for him.
Officers found Moore inside the downtown Berkeley BART station, police said.
He was identified and arrested without further incident.
The stolen money was recovered, Berkeley police said.
Moore, who is unhoused, told police he was staying in Berkeley, which is why he was in town at the time of the bank robbery.
When he was arrested in 2005, police described Moore as "very articulate, very straightforward," as well as a man with "a good memory," according to Bay Area New Group coverage at the time.
Bank robberies are rare in Berkeley but robberies overall are up in the city slightly compared to last year: There have been at least 187 robberies in Berkeley this year, up 4% from 2022.
In 2022, there were just two bank robberies in Berkeley throughout the year. There have now been at least two this year already.
As of Thursday, Moore remains in custody at Santa Rita Jail in Dublin.
The Alameda County district attorney's office has charged him with robbery, according to court records online.
In addition to numerous bank robbery convictions, Moore also has convictions for sodomy by use of force and battery with serious bodily injury, both felonies from the 1980s, according to court records.
He is scheduled for a pretrial hearing Aug. 14 at Wiley Manuel Courthouse in Oakland.
No bail amount was listed as of publication time.