Gun, child issues tackled before Rotary

TN one of 6 states ‘where private sellers have no required’ background check

Retired Federal Bureau of Investigation Agent W. Grey Steed, now principal of Grey Steed & Associates, shared his FBI experiences with Rotary Club of Farragut members in Fox Den Country Club Wednesday, Aug. 21.

Members heard about bank robberies, the Tylenol murders and the Butcher banking collapse of the 1980s.

Asked about recent shootings in El Paso and Dayton, Ohio, Steed supported meaningful gun reforms.

“I don’t see any reason (why) anybody has a fully automatic assault weapon,” he said. “I don’t see any reason why anyone should be allowed to sell a fully automatic assault weapon.

“If you want to deer hunt, deer hunt, but you don’t need something that can deliver 200 rounds per minute.”

With that, Steed pointed out, “Tennessee is one of, like, six states that you can be a private seller and not have to do a background check.”

Steed worked for seven years in the Chicago FBI office, specializing in financial crime investigations, primarily bank and wire fraud. He also served on the S.W.A.T. team for 15 years and a hostage negotiator for 12 years.

During his time with the FBI, Steed remembered one local case, “a Larry, Darryl and Darryl” bank robbery involving “three good ol’ boys” at a bank at Dixie Lee Junction.

Deciding to rob a bank because they wanted money for more beer, “their first choice was to go to the nearest bank, which is where they had their accounts,” Steed said. “They show up at the bank, they had been drinking, stood in line … and one of them said in a loud voice, ‘When you get up there, show (the teller) the gun so she knows we mean it.’”

Another guy said out loud, “I can’t do that. (The gun’s) in the car. So, after arguing, they had to leave to get the gun,” he said.

“By now, everyone is in the bank is laughing,” Steed added.

However, the three men did pull off the robbery, taking a female teller as hostage.

Looking to “drop off “ the hostage then go back to their trailer and drink the beer they just bought, the teller knew where they were going and called the FBI, which descends upon the trailer park, Steed said.

The robbers were given a hostage phone, which has a device that “even if you are not on the phone, we can hear what’s being said in the room,” he added.

“By now the S.W.A.T. team is getting impatient … the people in the trailer park have been evacuated — they are getting impatient, chanting ‘cheese them, cheese them.’”

One robber asked Steed what they meant, and he recalled replying, “I think they want us to fill you full of holes.’ I told him the S.W.A.T. team’s voting on it,’” Steed said.

They wanted a six-pack of Old Milwaukee beer.

After delivering the beer, Steed and the other two negotiators sat on the porch with the robbers, drank some beer, then the three men went off to jail for many years.

After retiring, Steed became director of security for Novo, a credit card processor, before founding Grey Steed & Associates in 2004 that provides services in fraud investigations, forensic accounting, litigation support, risk consulting and expert witness testimony.