Real Name: Unknown
Aliases: No known nicknames
Wanted For: Robbery
Missing Since: June 26, 1990
Details: At around 6:45 am on June 26, 1990, an Armored Motor Services of America dispatched an armored truck for a delivery in Rochester. The truck was carrying $11 million in cash. Just after 7 am, the truck made an unauthorized, but not uncommon, stop at a convenience store. One of the guards, "Mary Wilson", went inside the store, while the driver, Albert Ranieri, waited in the truck.
While Mary was buying doughnuts and coffee, three armed men exited a van and surrounded the armored truck. Five minutes later, Mary returned and was confronted by one of the gunmen. She was bound with plastic handcuffs. Albert was forced to drive to a secluded location 1.5 miles from the convenience store. The truck was followed by the Grey Chevrolet van, driven by one of the gunmen.
The secluded location was chosen in advance by the gunmen. Investigators knew this because several tree branches had been cut back to allow the armored truck to fit through the path. After arriving at the spot, a blue van arrived, driven by another accomplice. Albert was then bound and gagged and placed on top of Mary. The three men then quickly loaded the $11 million in cash into the blue van.
After they loaded the money into the van, the three men left the scene. After fifteen minutes, Mary was able to rip through the plastic handcuffs. She drove the armored truck to company headquarters and reported the robbery. The next day, the blue van was found abandoned five miles away. $13,000 in small bills were left behind. The rest of the money was missing.
Police suspect that the heist may have been an inside job. A conveniently broke porthole allowed one robber to hold the driver at gunpoint. Another robber used a key to open the truck's side door. Both gunmen wore clothes that were nearly identical to those worn by company employees. Finally, only a limited amount of people knew that the armored truck was carrying that large amount of untraceable cash.
Extra Notes: This segment originally ran on the May 6, 1992 episode.
Other armored car heists featured on Unsolved Mysteries include the Minnesota Brinks Heist and the Vallejo Armored Car Heist.
Results: Unresolved. For years, Albert Ranieri and his father were considered prime suspects in the robbery. However, in 1995, the statute of limitations ran out in the case. In December 2002, Ranieri confessed to the robbery and the unrelated 2000 murder of Anthony Vaccaro. He received a thirty year sentence for the murder and other charges. He will not be eligible for release until 2027.
Ranieri has never named the accomplices. Only $87,000 of the $11 million has ever been recovered; Ranieri claimed that he spent more than half a million dollars on drugs and investments.
- Rochester Car Heist at Unsolved.com
- Robbers Take $10.8 Million in Armored Car Hijacking
- 3 Years Later, Still No Arrests in Huge Armored-Car Robbery
- Statute of Limitations Expires in Truck Heist
- Truck Driver Admits Theft of $10.8 Million