Body found at home of 78-year-old bank robbery suspect after she failed to show up for court

28 July 2023

PLEASANT HILL, Mo. (AP) — A 78-year-old Missouri woman charged with robbing a bank in April didn’t show up to a court date, and police found a woman dead at her home when they checked on her this week.

Police in Pleasant Hill, a community of about 8,000 southeast of Kansas City, have not said whether they think the body found Wednesday is defendant Bonnie Gooch’s, but they did say they don’t suspect foul play and that an autopsy is scheduled. The police department didn’t immediately reply to messages seeking further information left Friday.

Authorities issued an arrest warrant for Gooch when she missed the Monday hearing. When police went to her home, they found the door unlocked and the body of a woman in a bedroom.

Gooch, who had two previous bank robbery convictions, was charged in April in a holdup in Pleasant Hill. In court documents, Cass County prosecutors allege that she passed a note to a teller demanding “13,000 small bills,” adding “thank you sorry I didn’t mean to scare you.” Surveillance video also captured her banging on the counter, asking the teller to hurry.

Gooch’s earlier robbery convictions were in California in 1977 and in the Kansas City suburb of Lee’s Summit in 2020. Her probation in the second heist ended in November 2021.

Need Help?

Please use the contact form to get support. Thank you.