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FBI: Cellphone records connected suspect to attempted bank robberies.

PHOENIX -- A suspect killed by Phoenix police in a bank robbery attempt is believed to be the same man accused in the shooting death of a Mississippi police officer and the wounding of another, the FBI said Sunday.

The statement came after Phoenix police shot and killed a suspect after Saturday's bank robbery attempt. Investigators believe the same suspect also tried to rob a bank in Atlanta on Dec. 23, hours before he allegedly shot the two officers in Tupelo, Miss.

Phoenix police identified the suspect Sunday as Mario Edward Garnett. Police spokesman James Holmes said that it was unclear when Garnett arrived in the state.

Garnett, 40, was from the Midwest, had served for four years in the U.S. Army and appeared to have no friends or relatives in Arizona, Holmes said at a Sunday afternoon news conference.

''We have no connection of this young man here in the city of Phoenix or in Arizona,'' he said.

Earlier Sunday, the FBI's special agent in charge in Jackson, Miss., said that records showed the suspect's cellphone was in Atlanta, Phoenix and Tupelo at the time of each incident.

The agent, Daniel McMullen, also told reporters in in Tupelo that there were ''numerous similarities'' between the three bank robberies, including the clothing worn by the suspect, statements he made during the incidents and his ''overall modus operandi.''

McMullen said the FBI believes the suspect killed by Phoenix police was the same person from the Atlanta and Tupelo robberies.

Also on Sunday, the Secret Service said Garnett was arrested in 2010 after making online threats against the president.

Secret Service spokesman Max Millien said Garnett was living in Oklahoma City at the time of the arrest. Millien would not say how the case was resolved.
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Publication:Telegram & Gazette (Worcester, MA)
Geographic Code:1U6MS
Date:Dec 30, 2013
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