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'Bearded Bandit' bank robber found dead on Southern California beach

Christopher Andrew Gibson, 32, was found early Tuesday morning on a beach in Encinitas in northern San Diego County.

ENCINITAS, Calif. — A convicted bank robber was found dead on a Southern California beach but the cause of his death remains under investigation, authorities said.

Christopher Andrew Gibson, 26, of Vista, Calif.FBI

Christopher Andrew Gibson, 32, was found early Tuesday morning on a beach in Encinitas in northern San Diego County, according to the county medical examiner’s office.

In 2015, Gibson pleaded guilty to federal charges that he robbed two banks in Vista and one in San Diego, the San Diego Union-Tribune reported.

Dubbed the “Bearded Bandit” because of his shaggy facial hair, Gibson would present notes to tellers demanding money and made off with more than $7,600 in cash.

The first robbery in 2014 was committed hours after Gibson was released from a detention center where he was being held on unrelated charges, the FBI said.

Gibson was sentenced to five years and eight months in federal prison for the robberies. In December 2019, he was charged with escape for failing to report back to a halfway house and the next month he was sentenced to 10 months in prison.

It wasn’t known where Gibson was living at the time of his death.