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Norco '80
Norco 80
Norco '80
God, guns, survivalism, and the bank robbery that changed policing forever.

About the Show

Listen as host and producer Antonia Cereijido tells the unbelievable true story about God, guns, survivalism and the bank robbery that changed policing in America forever. Using eyewitness testimony and never before heard police tapes, Norco 80 takes listeners on a wild ride, and serves as a cautionary tale in the context of America being immersed in the middle of an economic crisis, revamped end of the world paranoia and a complex conversation about policing.

Funding provided by:

Corporation for Public Broadcasting

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Episodes
  • Norco 80
    23:45
    May 9th, 1980 began as a regular Friday in sleepy Norco, a small town about 48 miles east of Los Angeles, known mostly for its horse trails and old-western look. But around 3:30pm, five masked men with assault rifles robbed the Security Pacific Bank downtown.
  • Norco 80
    35:23
    The bank robbers make it out of the Security Pacific Bank, cash in hand––but they’re immediately met by the police and a firefight begins.
  • Norco 80
    40:34
    George Smith didn't set out to rob a bank. He just wanted to survive the apocalypse.
  • Norco 80
    40:25
    The robbers lead police on a winding chase that ends in a devastating standoff at the top of a mountain.
  • Norco 80
    42:54
    After the chase finally ends, a shell-shocked police force demands bigger, more powerful weapons.
  • Norco 80
    43:41
    The “Norco 3” face the death penalty in one of the highest profile trials in Riverside County history.
  • Norco 80
    39:58
    George Smith speaks to us in his first-ever recorded interview, from a correctional facility in Corcoran, California.
  • Norco 80
    32:23
    The Norco Bank Robbery happened over 40 years ago, but its legend continues influence how police officers are trained today. Thanks to one very popular VHS tape.
  • Norco '80
    24:15
    Dr. Casey Kelly discusses survivalism's enduring allure, from pioneer days to prepper conventions.
  • Norco '80
    21:05
    In 2016, Rosa Brooks, a full-time law professor at Georgetown University, became a reserve police officer. Rosa had previously studied and written about the role of violence in society, but always from a perspective outside of law enforcement. Now, she's written a book about her years of service and the insight she gained about identity, militarization, and what police actually think.
Meet The Team
Host & Producer
Associate Producer
Production Assistant
Senior Producer
Executive Producer
Marialexa Kavanaugh
Intern
Composer
Fact-Checker