Third Suspect In “Ghost Mask” Bank Robberies Arrested
Orlando, Florida – Daniel Joseph Zirk (23, Spring Hill) has been arrested and charged by a federal criminal complaint with attempted bank robbery and using a firearm during a crime of violence. Zirk made his initial appearance in federal court today and was detained.
Zirk’s alleged co-conspirators, John Armstrong, Jr. (30, North Fort Myers) and Tanya Legg (43, North Fort Myers) were arrested on October 7, 2019, on related charges. On October 16, 2019, a grand jury returned an indictment charging Armstrong with Hobbs Act robbery, attempted bank robbery, bank robbery, three counts of brandishing a firearm during a crime of violence, and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. The indictment charges Legg with aiding and abetting a bank robbery, aiding and abetting the brandishing of a firearm during a crime of violence, and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. If convicted, Zirk, Legg, and Armstrong each face up to life in federal prison.
According to allegation in the complaint against Zirk and indictment against Armstrong and Legg, on June 14, 2019, Armstrong used a firearm to rob a 7-11 store in North Fort Myers. During the robbery, Armstrong struck one of the store employees in the face with his firearm, causing a laceration to the bottom corner of her left eye.
On September 25, 2019, Armstrong and Zirk attempted to commit an armed robbery of a PNC Bank in Davenport. Zirk had carjacked a vehicle earlier that morning, holding the victim at gunpoint. Armstrong and Zirk later used the stolen vehicle as a getaway vehicle following the attempted PNC Bank robbery.
On September 26, 2019, Armstrong, Zirk, and Legg robbed a BB&T Bank in Altamonte Springs. Armstrong and Zirk used firearms to force bank employees to open the bank’s safe and then stole approximately $22,000 in cash. Legg assisted in purchasing items used to complete the BB&T robbery and then served as the getaway driver. Zirk and Armstrong wore ghost masks at each of the banks.
A criminal complaint is merely an allegation that a defendant has committed one or more violations of federal criminal law, and every defendant is presumed innocent unless, and until, proven guilty.
This case is being investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, with assistance from the Altamonte Springs Police Department, the Fort Myers Police Department, the Hernando County Sheriff’s Office, the Lee County Sheriff’s Office, the Orange County Sheriff’s Office, the Osceola County Sheriff’s Office, the Pasco Sheriff’s Office, the Punta Gorda Police Department, the Seminole County Sheriff’s Office, and the Tampa Police Department. It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Chauncey A. Bratt.