lab assistant who took cyanide when police arrived, after he was noticed acting
suspiciously at the back door of a bank, died of the poison.
said David E. Packard, 31, of
1642 E Sixth St.
died at 6:52 p.m. Wednesday in
, where he had been in a coma since he was brought in shortly after 3 p.m. last
said Packard, wearing a knit watch cap pulled low over his head and rubber
surgical gloves, clutching a knap-sack. was seen by a passerby at the back door
of the Bank of America,
2240 Bellflower Blvd.
The passerby called police. W h e n Officer Mike Linck arrived to check out the
report, he said Packard pulled a small bottle out of the knapsack and gulped the
contents. Packard collapsed and went into convulsions. Paramedics called to the
scene began giving him aid for cyanide poisoning after smelling the bottle, and
doctors later confirmed the diagnosis.
Man at Bank’s door had gun, and cyanide
DICK ROWLANDStaff Writer
had been standing for about 15 minutes Friday in the Bank of America parking lot
2240 Bellflower Blvd.
He looked to be about 25, sixfoot, about 185 pounds. Maybe it meant nothing, a
passerby thought, but why would someone hang around the back door of a bank at
three in the afternoon, wearing a knit watch-cap pulled low over his head and
clutching a knapsack? And what about those rubber surgical gloves pulled up over
his hands and arms? Officer .Mike Linck, too, thought it looked suspicious, as
he drove up in a patrol car to check out the passerby's report. A second patrol
car cruised nearby. "He was really eyeballing that black-and-white,"
Linck recalled.. "I told him to keep his hands away from his body and stand
Linck cautiously approached the suspect and tensed when the man dropped the
knapsack and shoved one hand into a trouser pocket. Linck expected a weapon.
Instead, the man pulled out a small bottle, put it to his mouth, and gulped what
was inside. The bottle crashed to the ground as the man slumped onto the
pavement. Linck put his hand inside the knapsack and found a .22-caliber pistol.
The man was now gasping and writhing in convulsions.
said that whatever was in the bottle smelled like almonds. They began treating
him for cyanide poisoning. Doctors at
later confirmed the diagnosis.
unidentified young man remained in critical condition late Friday. The man
carried no identification, which officers said "is almost a trademark"
of bank robbers. Under treatment at the hospital, the man is being held for
investigation of attempted bank robbery.
the Independent Press-Telegram, Saturday, November 13, 1976, Long Beach, CA