Suspect charged in Monica Leech case with first-degree murder with two special allegations staff KABC logo
Tuesday, March 14, 2023
Suspect arrested in 1997 murder of SoCal teller during bank robbery
A suspect has been arrested in the 1997 murder of Monica Leech, a teller who was shot and killed during a bank robbery in Thousand Oaks.

THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. (KABC) -- Ventura County District Attorney Erik Nasarenko announced that a suspect has been charged with first-degree murder in connection to the 1997 killing of Monica Leech during a bank robbery at the Western Financial Bank in Thousand Oaks.

After a decades-long investigation, prosecutors have identified 55-year-old Kevin Ray James of San Bernardino as the man who allegedly shot Leech, a mother of four, in the back of the head.

James has been charged with first-degree murder with two charges of special allegations of murder while engaged in a robbery and use of a firearm.

A news conference will be held at 10 a.m. Tuesday at the Thousand Oaks Police Station to discuss the arrest and charges.

Leech was working as a bank teller when she was killed.

The robbery was carried out by two men dressed as construction workers. They got away with a little over $11,000.