Kim Komenich, San Jose State Professor, Halts Bank Robbery with a Hug

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​Kim Komenich, a journalism professor at San Jose State, was at a Wells Fargo bank when he noticed the customer ahead of him hand a teller a note. A quick glance at the missive revealed something about a gun…



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Kim Komenich was standing in line when he saw a customer hand the teller a note saying something about a gun…

​Then he heard Victor Fernandes tell the teller to “Give me your money.” So Komenich, who weighs in at a manly 260 pounds, decided to thwart the robbery in the most peaceable way — by giving the bad guy a hug.

Okay, so it was a bear hug. But let’s not quibble here, people. That still constitutes a hug.

Komenich lifted the robber off the ground to let him know he was in charge. Then he held him for five minutes until police arrived.


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…So he picked the bad guy up in a bear hug and held him until police arrived.

​The professor admits Fernandes wasn’t the most skilled bandit. He’d arrived at the bank with two friends, Johnnie Dale Gray and Tamara Leeann Rennert, who took a chair while they waited for their pal to rob the bank. But Gray and Rennert were so moronic they never bothered to intervene on Fernandes’ behalf — or flee — before police arrived. They also forgot to bring their gun, which is commonly thought to be an essential tool in the armed robbery industry.

Though today he’s a mild-mannered professor/hero, Komenich doesn’t originally hail from dainty campus environs. He’s a former Pulitzer Prize winning photographer from San Francisco, having covered stories in Vietnam, the Soviet Union, El Salvador, Iraq and Guyana.

See our last robbery story: Caught on Tape: The World’s Most Inept Robber Comes to Tulsa.

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