MONROE, La. (AP) - The number of bank robberies has been rising here and in neighboring West Monroe, and police believe the increase will continue.
"The number is definitely going up and I believe we will have more ... this year," said Stan Hayden of the West Monroe Police Department. "I think more bank robberies are being committed because people are trying to get money to buy drugs."
Monroe had five bank robberies in 2001, up from zero in 2000. West Monroe had four bank robberies in 2001 and one the previous year.
Hayden said police have increased patrols near banks and businesses to try to curb all robberies.
Arrests have been made in three of the five Monroe bank robberies in 2001. Arrests have been made in all four West Monroe bank robberies.