'Bucket List Bandit' won't say if terminally ill

Associated Press Modified: October 4, 2012 at 10:48 am •  Published: October 4, 2012
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Brewster wore an orange, one-piece jumpsuit from the nearby Erie County Prison, and had a stubbly beard, mustache and wore his graying light brown hair brushed straight back, as it appeared in the bank surveillance photos. He answered most of Baxter's questions with a simple, "Yes, ma'am" before pleading not guilty to the unarmed bank robbery charge and grabbing a manila envelope full of court papers, before he was handcuffed and led away by deputy U.S. marshals.

Brewster just shrugged and smiled when a reporter asked if he really was terminally ill as he left the courtroom.

Although he was returning to the county jail, Brewster will then be moved to the Northeast Ohio Correctional Center, a private lockup near Youngstown, Ohio.

The FBI and marshals say they can't comment on Brewster's medical status because of federal privacy laws and Assistant U.S. Marshall Piccinini said he "really didn't know" if Brewster had requested any special health care.

Federal public defender Thomas Patton wouldn't say anything about Brewster.

"I don't have any comment," he said.

Piccinini won't handle the charges should Brewster be indicted in any of the other bank robberies. The FBI and Justice Department officials have said only that those investigations were still being coordinated.

In addition to the robberies in Colorado, Utah and Pennsylvania, Brewster is suspected of robberies in Flagstaff, Ariz.; Pocatello, Idaho; Winston-Salem, N.C.; Chattanooga, Tenn.; Bloomington, Ill.; Columbia and O'Fallon, Mo.

Nobody was hurt in the robberies, and the total amount of money taken hasn't been released, though the indictment said Brewster took $4,080 from the Erie bank.