A Santa Ana man dubbed the "Wrong Way Bandit" after robbing five Orange County banks, including Centennial Bank in Fountain Valley, pleaded guilty Friday to six counts of second-degree robbery and one count of attempted robbery.
Jose Luis Arciga, 40, was sentenced to nine years in state prison for the robberies, which carried a maximum sentence of 11 years and four months. The gun-use enhancement charge against Arciga was dropped for lack of sufficient evidence, Deputy District Attorney John Maxfield said.
Arciga was arrested in March by Garden Grove police and of second-degree robbery and three counts of attempted second-degree robbery, with sentence-enhancing gun-use allegations. He was charged with robbing seven tellers in five bank branches Bank of the West in Garden Grove, Centennial Bank in Fountain Valley, First Bank and Trust in Costa Mesa, Nuvision Federal Credit Union in Costa Mesa and U.S. Bank in Tustin between Aug. 18 and Dec. 30 of last year, Maxfield said. Arciga is also charged with attempting to rob a sixth bank, the prosecutor said.
Arciga got the "Wrong Way" nickname because in one of the holdups he committed, he started to walk out the door he came in, realized his mistake and then made a u-turn to go out an exit door, according to FBI Special Agent Chris Gicking.