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Police Arrest Suspect in 20 Armed Robberies

October 18, 1992

HUNTINGTON BEACH — Police have arrested a man suspected of about 20 armed robberies throughout Orange County committed by a gunman nicknamed "the John Goodman bandit" for his likeness to the well-known actor.

"Thanks to an alert Huntington Beach patrol officer, the streets of Orange County are much safer today," Detective Sgt. Ed Deuel said in a prepared statement announcing the arrest of Michael Angelo Powell, 31, of Costa Mesa.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation recently distributed wanted flyers identifying "the John Goodman bandit" as the man suspected of a string of armed robberies of Orange County banks, department stores and neighborhood stores that began in April.

Believing that the bandit was beginning to return to areas he had already robbed, Huntington Beach police on Friday patrolled the intersection of Magnolia Street and Garfield Avenue, where Parties Plus was robbed Sept. 28.

Officer Bill Koressel spotted a pickup truck that matched the description of the bandit's vehicle near the intersection about 3 p.m. Koressel noticed that the driver resembled John Goodman, who plays Roseanne Arnold's husband on the popular television comedy "Roseanne," and arrested him without incident.

"He's ubiquitous," said Huntington Beach Lt. John Foster. "It's not like he just sprung up yesterday and we caught him today."

Owners of several stores robbed by the bandit have identified Powell as the John Goodman look-alike.

Powell was being held on $50,000 bond in Huntington Beach city jail Saturday. He is scheduled for arraignment Monday.

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