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Pub robber gets 21-year sentence

Man convicted of five counts of second-degree robbery
by: Contributed graphic, Scott Vincent Suran

A man who robbed pubs and cafes in Gresham and Troutdale last summer will spend the next 20 years in prison.

Scott Vincent Suran, 44, of Estacada, pleaded guilty to five counts of second-degree robbery and two counts of attempted second-degree robbery on Monday, March 5, in Multnomah County Circuit Court. He was sentenced to 19 years in prison, but because he violated his probation on a previous theft conviction, another 26 months are tacked on, for a total of 256 months, or more than 21 years in prison.

If Suran behaves himself, he could get as much as 30 months shaved off his sentence. But even if that happens, he'll be 63 when released, said Ethan Knight, the deputy district attorney who prosecuted Suran.

Knight said he is satisfied with the sentence.

'It certainly captures the number (of offenses) and removes him from the community effectively for as long as he can still commit crimes,' Knight said.

Suran was indicted on 13 counts of robbery for holding up pubs and cafes throughout the Willamette Valley, including at least three in Gresham, one in Troutdale and others in Portland, Salem and Albany, Tigard and Tualatin.

Police dubbed him the 'Cash-Me-Out Bandit' due to his technique. He'd play some video poker, approach an employee to cash out his ticket, reveal a gun and demand money from the register.

While police investigated, a Parkrose bartender recognized a customer from a police flier and saved Suran's shot glass. That allowed police to identify the suspect, but investigators were unable to find him.

About a week later, police saw the suspect's red van heading south on Interstate 5 just after an attempted robbery in Northeast Portland on Aug. 28. A Portland officer chased after the speeding van, which crashed and erupted in flames in Clackamas County. Suran got out of the burning wreckage and ran into a nearby residential area, where the officers stopped him with a gunshot to the shoulder.

Investigators discovered that the gun Suran used was fake after finding a melted blob of its plastic remains in the burned vehicle.