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‘Chameleon Bandit’ convicted in bank robbery series

SAN DIEGO – An El Cajon man dubbed the “Chameleon Bandit” because of his changing appearance for different bank robberies was convicted Monday of holding up five banks in San Diego County last October.

A jury however, deadlocked on two robbery counts against 28-year-old Darius Demon Lake involving a sixth heist. A status conference is scheduled for Friday.

Lake and co-defendant Brian Lee Barkley were arrested in late October after they left physical evidence behind at the scene of one of three robberies in El Cajon, authorities said.

Barkley, who helped Lake with at least one of the robberies, pleaded guilty before trial.

The series of bank robberies began Oct. 5, police said.

Authorities said Lake never used a weapon, but made threats to secure cash from frightened bank tellers.