Two blond bombshells dubbed the Barbie Bandits shocked the nation when they burst into a Georgia bank and allegedly tried to rob it earlier this year.
Now, in her first interview since the incident, 19-year old Heather Johnston, one of the alleged "bandits," told ABC's David Muir that the whole scheme started out as a prank.
"This all began as a joke," she said. "I mean, it's crossed a lot of people's minds, from what I've heard."
The joke became a reality with the help of Johnson's friend, Ashley Miller and Miller's boyfriend, who knew a teller at a Bank of America branch. One February morning, the teller, Johnston said, told her how to write a threatening note. All the while, Johnston said she didn't think about how her plan might terrify the other bank workers.
"No, because we had an inside man. So, no," she said.
'Stunner Shades' and Highlights
Clad in form fitting jeans, tight tops and large sunglasses that Johnston and Miller called "stunner shades," the teen girls headed to the bank to pull off their heist. Their plan wasn't without flaws -- they weren't able to get the wigs they wanted and at first, they went to the wrong bank.
"We took a wrong turn somewhere, ended up going to a complete different Bank of America," Johnston said.
Realizing the inside man was not at the bank, they called him, got new directions and soon showed up at the correct bank. After the girls handed over the note, Johnston said the money started flying.
"He started throwing it out and it was like going everywhere," Johnston said. "So I was pushing it, Ashley was grabbing it, putting it, throwing it in the bag,"
After collecting thousands of dollars, Johnston said they hit the mall to get highlights at a high-end salon. They were later arrested and charged with felony theft.
For a girl who was supposed to be in her first year of college, the bank robbery was the culmination of a trip down the wrong path.
Johnston was a scholarship winner from a typical middle class home. But before heading to college, she met new friends and decided to try working as an exotic dancer. She became fast friends with fellow dancer Miller. The girl who wanted to become a dental hygienist was soon far off track.
For Johnston's mother, an elementary school teacher, the ordeal has been heart-wrenching.
"[It's] devastating as a mom," she said, her voice breaking. "With my children, and I hope that I would instill positive values … we always did something special together. And I thought that that would instill and pretty much guarantee me wonderful adults, but I guess there is no guarantee."
Out of prison on bail, Johnston has found a new job with an advertising firm — her first boss fired her after learning she was one of the Barbie Bandits.
But Johnston's troubles may not be over. Knowing she could face up to 10 years in prison, she's admitted the bank robbery scheme wasn't the brightest idea.
"Some of the stuff we did was just pretty ignorant," she said.