The Student News Site of Gannon University since 1947


The Student News Site of Gannon University since 1947


The Student News Site of Gannon University since 1947


Second book coming out

Gannon University criminal justice professor Jerry Clark, Ph.D., is once again teaming up with Ed Palattella, Erie Times News reporter for more than 24 years, to write a second book.

The new book is tentatively titled, “A History of Heists: Bank Robbery in the United States.” It will be published by Rowman & Littlefield Publishers and is expected to be available in early 2015.

It will be a more academic based general interest book, retailing for $38. The book will be available in hardcover and  or as an e-book, to be read on Kindles, Nooks and Apple products.

The book will detail the history of bank robberies all across America, dating as far back as the 1800s to present day.

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Clark and Palattella will look at the changes in the United States bank robbery techniques and how law enforcement has responded to them over the years.

Clark previously worked as an FBI agent and dealt with hundreds of bank robbery cases. He said he is looking forward to combining historical records to examine famous holdups and the interesting people involved.

According to Clark, the collaboration with Palattella is something he greatly enjoys. Palattella received his master’s degree in journalism from Stanford University. Clark credits him as a “great writer and researcher.”

While some authors may find the task of co-writing difficult, Clark said he enjoys it because he and Palattella have different skill sets.

Clark said he is used to writing the way law enforcement officers and investigators do. He will write in his style and then send his work to Palattella, who then transcribes it into a more readable format, something Clark greatly admires. He admits that writing in a cohesive and understandable method is not an easy task to do.

The duo co-authored another book, “Pizza Bomber: The Untold Story of America’s Most Shocking Bank Robbery,” which has garnished attention regionally, nationally and internationally. It was published in 2012 and details the case of the pizza bomber in Erie. Clark worked on the case as an FBI agent and Palattella investigated and wrote numerous articles about the incident, which appeared in the Erie Times-News.

Clark admits that writing a book is not a walk in the park; it is a very labor-intensive process with a lot of research and statistical elements to fact check.

Of collaborating with Clark again, Palattella, said, in a press release issues by Gannon, “I am glad to be able to continue to work with Jerry, who has a deep knowledge of criminal behavior and investigative techniques. Particularly because of the movies, bank robbery has a unique place in American culture and crime. Our book will take a look at the criminals, the investigators and how they tried to outwit one another.

Clark said he hopes the book will give audiences a better understanding of the history and evolution of bank robberies, as well as law enforcement’s responses to such robberies.

 He also said it will help law enforcement address bank robberies and to reduce them.

 Due to the success of the pair’s first book, Clark said there is a little pressure for the second book.

He said with a first book, an author worries about whether  it will be successful and how it is going to resonate with audiences.

And while he still worries a bit, he is focusing his energy into how the second book will be seen and viewed by their audience.

According to Clark, it’s far more important to put the “best product forward,” than worry about ratings.

“If you produce a good product, you’ll have some success out of it,” Clark said.

In the long term, both Clark and Palattella hope that their book will be used as a textbook in colleges and universities across America. Eventually, it could result in having a course offered about the history of bank robberies, which would be pretty exciting, Clark said.


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