Police: Wichita bank robbery suspect identified

By KNSS Radio

The Wichita Police Department (WPD) is investigating a bank robbery resulting in an officer-involved shooting.  At approximately 3:40 p.m. on Monday, officers responded to a bank robbery at the Golden Plains Credit Union, located at 9555 East Corporate Hills Drive. The suspect, 50-year-old Paul Peraza, entered the bank, walked behind the counter, and demanded money. Employees did not see a weapon, but they were in fear of their safety. Money was taken by Peraza, who then fled in a Toyota Tundra.  A WPD officer observed the Toyota traveling north on Webb Road and attempted to stop Peraza. Peraza refused to stop and drove at excessive speeds into oncoming traffic to evade the officer. Peraza turned east on 13th street and struck a citizen’s 2001 silver Chevy Suburban that was stopped at a red light. The driver received minor injuries. Peraza then put the Tundra in reverse and rammed the officer’s patrol vehicle in an attempt to flee. The officer was not injured. Peraza refused to exit the truck. The officer, concerned about his safety and the public’s safety, fired shots and struck Peraza. Peraza then drove forward and struck a Honda Accord, which was also stopped at the intersection.  EMS responded to render aid, but Peraza was pronounced deceased on the scene. Investigators recovered money from the robbery in the bed of the pick-up truck.  After the incident, the following information was learned: • In 1996, Peraza was convicted of a bank robbery in California. He was also convicted of an armed bank robbery in 2006 in Oklahoma and was placed on Federal Probation. • On December 10, Peraza was arrested by WPD for felon in possession of firearm, possession of illegal weapons, possession of methamphetamine, auto theft, possession of narcotics, and possession of a narcotic instrument. • A federal probation violation warrant had been issued for Peraza on December 14, 2020.  The Kanas Bureau of Investigation and the Federal Bureau of Investigation are assisting in the investigation. 

The involved WPD officer is a nine-year veteran of the department and is assigned to the Patrol East Bureau. The officer has been placed on paid administrative leave, which is standard protocol in officer-involved shootings.  

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