msnbc.com staff and news service reports
updated 12/23/2011 3:37:16 PM ET 2011-12-23T20:37:16

A Tampa Bay area man ordered a beer at a bar, left to rob a nearby bank then came back to finish his drink, authorities say.

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John Robin Whittle, 52, was arrested at the Hayloft Bar in Port Richey on Thursday afternoon, according to the Pasco County Sheriff's Office.

Deputies allege he's the man who robbed a Wells-Fargo bank branch earlier.

A bartender told investigators that Whittle ordered a beer, disappeared for about 30 minutes and then returned to his drink.

WTSP reported that deputies spotted a man who fit the robber's description "a few doors down" at the Hayloft Bar about 10 minutes after the crime was reported.

Whittle remained in jail early Friday on $10,000 bond. No attorney was listed for him.

The Associated Press and msnbc.com staff contributed to this report.

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