Norco '80: The True Story of the Most Spectacular Bank Robbery in American History

Norco '80: The True Story of the Most Spectacular Bank Robbery in American History Review

In the spirit of Killers of the Flower Moon and The Onion Field, Norco ’80 is a gripping true crime account of one of the most violent bank heists in US history.

Norco ’80 tells the story of how five heavily-armed young men—led by an apocalyptic born-again Christian—attempted a bank robbery that turned into one of the most violent criminal events in U.S. history, forever changing the face of American law enforcement. Part action thriller and part courtroom drama, Norco ’80 transports the reader back to the Southern California of the 1970s, an era of predatory evangelical gurus, doomsday predictions, megachurches, and soaring crime rates, with the threat of nuclear obliteration looming over it all.

A group of landscapers transforms into a murderous gang of bank robbers armed to the teeth with military-grade weapons. Their desperate getaway turned the surrounding towns into war zones. When it was over, three were dead and close to twenty wounded; a police helicopter was forced down from the sky, and thirty-two police vehicles were destroyed by thousands of rounds of ammo. The resulting trials shook the community to the core, raising many issues that continue to plague society today: from racism and the epidemic of post-traumatic stress disorder within law enforcement to religious extremism and the militarization of local police forces.

Title:Norco '80: The True Story of the Most Spectacular Bank Robbery in American History
Edition Language:English

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    Norco '80: The True Story of the Most Spectacular Bank Robbery in American History Reviews

  • OutlawPoet

    Oh, this book was all kinds of amazing!Even though I'm from Southern California, I'd never heard of the Norco bank robbery. I figured it was before my time, but my parents hadn't heard of it either. R...

  • Lori

    This is a remarkable book, the true story of a bank robbery in Norco, California, in Riverside County by five men, some of them religious Christians convinced the end times were coming. Two lived toge...

  • Debbie Rose

    Evidence Never LiesGiven the evidence available to you, I appreciate you being an impartial writer...WELL DONE.From one who lived it,Debbie RoseInvestigator Asst. to Jeanne Painter...

  • Chaz

    3.5 stars really...Quite a story and one that, like most people, I was completely unfamiliar with. I know there is talk of a movie about this, and there really should be.The book is a good read, altho...

  • Brad

    Norco ‘80 by Peter Houlahan is a nonfiction #BOTM pick. This book tells the story of a bank robbery gone horribly wrong in California in 1980. There is a lot of detail (sometimes too much) about the...

  • Ashley

    Interesting story, but gets a bit bogged down in the details of the police chase. Overall, very enjoyable...

  • Kerri

    I received this book as a Goodreads Giveaway. This story provides further proof that truth is stranger than fiction. From the beginning, it engages the reader and doesn't let go; narrative writing at ...

  • Brandt

    So I realize that I have a kind of hardcore ideal of what "histories" should be about and why they should be written (see my review of The Crowded Hour among other histories I have recently read for...

  • Ken Heard

    I was bogged down at first by Peter Houlahan's writing style in the first third of the book. He took massive author liberties in assuming what the robbers said and thought while planning their heist a...

  • Katie/Doing Dewey

    Summary: A well-written account of a dramatic true crime.This is the story of a 1980 bank robbery in Norco, California. Committed by five men almost on a whim, this poorly planned robbery led to a te...