Police Ask Motorists Who Picked up Bank Robbery Cash Strewn Across 15 Freeway in Lake Elsinore to Return the Money

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Police are hoping the motorists who picked up wads of cash thrown from a bank robbery suspect’s vehicle on the 15 Freeway will return the money, officials said Sunday.

Thomas Burke, 27, is seen in a booking photo released by Lake Elsinore police on Dec. 12, 2017.

Thomas Burke, 27, is seen in a booking photo released by Lake Elsinore police on Dec. 12, 2017.

The cash is connected to a bank robbery that occurred around 4:15 p.m. Saturday in the 29000 block of Canyon Hills Road, according to the Lake Elsinore Police Department.

After allegedly robbing the bank, suspect Thomas Burke, 27, is accused of fleeing in a gold Buick sedan down the northbound 15 Freeway.

Police engaged in a pursuit of the vehicle, and during the chase the driver was seen throwing cash out the cars’ windows, sending it fluttering across the freeway.

The pursuit ended after Burke got off the freeway at Cajalco Road and collided with another car, police said.

Burke was then arrested without further incident and transported for treatment of injuries he suffered in the crash.

The Murrieta resident remained hospitalized Tuesday but will be booked on suspicion of robbery, felony evading and parole violations upon his release from the hospital, officials said.

The driver of the other car involved in the collision fled the scene and has not been located, according to police.

Following the chase, the 15 Freeway was shut down for a time to allow police to recover the monetary evidence discarded by the suspect. Witnesses told police drivers had stopped to pick up cash then drove away.

Investigators are searching for anyone who can help them recover the money. Anyone with information can call the Lake Elsinore Police Department at 951-245-3300.

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