Bank robber sought

Published 12:00 am Thursday, August 3, 2006

AHOSKIE – A lone suspect is sought in connection with the armed robbery of RBC Centura Bank here Wednesday morning.

An undisclosed amount of cash was taken in the heist. Fortunately, no one was injured.

According to Ahoskie Police Chief Troy Fitzhugh, a black male entered the east side door of the bank shortly past 10 a.m. Once inside, eyewitnesses (customers and bank employees) noticed the man was brandishing a handgun.

“The suspect jumped on the teller’s counter and demanded money,” Fitzhugh said. “He was last seen leaving the bank on foot.”

Fitzhugh added that the suspect used the same east side door to exit the bank. Rumors were unfounded that the suspect entered Eddie Harrell’s Auto and Sports Store (located adjacent to RBC Centura) prior to or after the robbery. However, an eyewitness offered information that the suspect was seen prior to the robbery heading towards the bank from South Catherine Street.

The Ahoskie Police Department was notified of the robbery at 10:11 a.m. They quickly converged on the area (the bank is located at 102 North Church Street) and sealed off the parking lot. Adjacent streets were closed moments later.

Launching a manhunt, the Ahoskie Police n aided by the Hertford County Sheriff’s Office and North Carolina Highway Patrol n searched the general area near the bank. The Ahoskie Fire Department set-up a command post for the law enforcement officers to use during their on-scene investigation.

A tracking dog from the Gates County Sheriff’s Office picked-up a scent from the east side door, following it to an area on South Street behind Basnight’s. There, the dog lost the scent.

The suspect is described as a black male, weighing approximately 140-160 pounds (no description of height was reported). He was wearing a white “Gilligan” style hat (with brim all the way around), a long-sleeved blue and white shirt (with vertical stripes), tan pants and black boots. Additional information revealed the suspect wore latex gloves and a mask that covered his nose and mouth.

Following nearly four hours of investigation at the scene, the bank reopened for business at 2:30 p.m.

Ahoskie Police Detective Sgt. Jeremy Roberts and FBI Agent Dan Snow are heading-up the investigation.

Anyone with information concerning the robbery is urged to call the Ahoskie Police Department at 332-5011.