Southern News

The sudden end to the whack-o called “the Granny Bandit” was yet another confirmation , to me at least, that we’ll always need newspapers.

We first learned as early  as Tuesday afternoon on AJC.com, the Web version of my journalism alma mater, that the weird criminal who held up convenience stores and fast food joints in the metro area and died in a shootout with cops who had chased the bandit’s gold jeep, was no grandma.

Nope. Roxanne Nicole Taylor, dead at age 57, was no woman, either.

He was born Donald H. Ellis Jr. in Alabama. Efforts to find relatives in the Huntsville area as of late yesterday had been unsucessful, the AJC reported.

A pilot of small planes and helicopters, Ellis had lived under the name Roxanne Taylor since sometime in the 1990s, AJC.com reported, but had no further details. The gun play erupted after the bandit, whose gold jeep was spotted in a DeKalb County hamburger joint drive through, was chased down along Druid Hills  Road.

His puffy face, caught frequently during the crime spree by surveillance cameras, resembled that of a middle aged woman.

And in each holdup, police and witnesses said,the culprit wore a UGA. ball cap.

To which I can say only: Go Gators!

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Bill Montgomery

Bill Montgomery

Bill Montgomery, aka "Monty," packed it in a few years back after 38 years as a reporter with the AJC, covering mostly crime and other forms of public insanity, such as political campaigns, strip club crackdowns, and the Georgia legislature. His career includes coverage of zanies that run the gamut from Lester Maddox and J.B. Stoner to Larry Flynt, and crime reporting that followed the 1973 Alday family killings in South Georgia to the execution of ringleader Carl Isaacs 30 years later, and the 20-year saga of Palm Beach millionaire James V. Sullivan, who hired the murder of his estranged wife at her Buckhead condo by a gunman packing a pistol in a box of roses. Montgomery lives in a Decatur condo with his wife Linda and their Boston terrier.