'Salon Bandit' Released From Prison, Tells His Story To Phoenix Magazine

Published: Wednesday, June 6, 2018 - 3:49pm
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Arizona Department of Corrections
Joe Watson in 2010.

The story of former Phoenix New Times journalist Joe Watson made headlines more than a decade ago. Watson was an award-winning writer, but he was also addicted to gambling and lost thousands of dollars, putting himself in a deep hole.

That reality led him to — in his mind, at least — a pair of terrible options. He would find a cliff to drive off of or he would rob a gas station.

Robbery was the option he chose. And he went on to rob 10 people, which included two tanning salons. So police went on to label Watson the “Salon Bandit.”

Watson recently got out of prison and told his story to Phoenix Magazine. Craig Outhier, the magazine’s editor, joined The Show to talk about it.

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