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Bank Robber Said He'd Rather Be In Jail Than With Wife - Given House Arrest

Depression in the elderly is a serious problem that often goes undertreated. Severe depression can cause people to do things that they normally wouldn’t do otherwise, even risky things that could ruin their lives. One elderly man was struggling with a terrible depression ever since he underwent heart surgery two years ago. Life had spiraled out of control, and in a rash moment the man went and committed a crime. He’s now facing the punishment for that crime, though it may be the opposite outcome that he intended.

Lawrence John Ripple of Kansas had a quadruple bypass procedure in 2015, and it left the 71-year-old in a terrible state of depression. Things continued to go downhill for him, and his mood put a strain on his relationship with his wife. He got to the point at which he thought he was willing to risk everything just to get away from her.

In September of 2016, Ripple walked into a federal bank in Kansas City and gave the teller a note. The note read, "I have a gun, give me money."

The teller gave Ripple nearly $3,000 in cash. Instead of fleeing, the elderly man went to the bank's lobby, sat down and waited for a security guard. When he saw the guard, he told him he was 'the guy he was looking for', said a police report. Ripple happily turned himself in.

The FBI investigated the crime, which didn't seem to be thought out very well. Hours earlier, Ripple had apparently told his wife that he'd 'rather be in jail than at home'.

Ripple's lawyer called the crime a 'cry for help' and begged the judge for mercy. The man pleaded guilty to federal bank robbery in January.

Ripple had otherwise had a clean record; he had never been in trouble with the law in his life. Also, while he was in the legal system, he managed to get help for his undiagnosed depression. With therapy and medication, he said he was feeling much more like his old self.

Ripple apologized to the bank, as well as to the teller, saying he didn't mean to scare anyone. The judge was lenient with Ripple and sentenced him to six months, three years’ probation, community service, and a reasonable fine of $500 to go to a victim's fund.

The catch? Ripple's six months are to be spent not in jail, but in house confinement.

Ripple's wife was in court standing by her husband. There is no word on whether their relationship has improved at all, or if they're seeking help to reconcile their differences. Hopefully, with Ripple now getting treatment, he and his wife can fix the problems.

On the other hand, if not, it’s going to be a very long six months - and who knows what kinds of crimes Ripple’s wife might drive him to in the future? This sentencing might have been lenient, or perhaps the judge was just being snarky.

Source: Daily Mail
Photo: Wyandotte County Sheriff’s Office

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