Johnson County men charged with robbing banks wearing Black Panther and Venom masks

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KANSAS CITY, Kan. — Two Johnson County men are charged in federal court after allegedly robbing two banks wearing “Black Panther” and “Venom” masks.  

Michael Shiferaw, 20, and Kenya Breakfield, 21, both of Olathe, were charged with two counts of bank robbery in federal court in Kansas.

Michael Shiferaw (left) and Kenya Breakfield (right) face federal charges in connection to two bank robberies

The pair allegedly robbed the Wells Fargo bank in Leawood on Oct. 31, 2018 as well as the Commerce Bank in Roeland Park Wednesday afternoon.

According to court documents, two robbers entered the Wells Fargo on 103rd Street in Leawood carrying guns and wearing masks that resembled the comic book character “Venom.”  One of the robbers fired a shot into the ceiling before leaving with cash.

On Wednesday, shortly before 2:30 p.m., investigators responded to a robbery at the Commerce Bank at 4700 Johnson Drive in Roeland Park.

Witnesses told detectives that a suspect wearing a “Black Panther” mask entered the store, fired a shot into the air and yelled at everyone to get down. The teller was able to pull the alarm before the suspect fired another shot and demanded money from the bank vault. The suspect fired two more shots before taking money in a backpack and leaving in a small black car.

Later in the day, federal agents set up surveillance at a house in the 1700 block of Lindenwood in Olathe where they were able to follow the suspects to Shiferaw’s house in the 1200 block of Meadow Lane.

Image from the Roeland Park bank robbery

The suspects were taken into custody after a domestic disturbance call at Shiferaw’s house. During the arrest, agents found a black backpack full of cash and a handgun.

Prosecutors allege that Breakfield took part in the first robbery and drove the getaway car in the second robbery. The men allegedly bought the masks at a Spencers gift store.

If convicted, both Breakfield and Shiferaw face up to 25 years in prison and a fine of $250,000 on each count.

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