Lawmen seek bank robber

Published 12:00 am Friday, January 26, 2007

SUNBURY – Gates County Sheriff Edward E. Webb confirmed on Friday that his department has been joined by the F.B.I. and law enforcement officers from Portsmouth VA in the search for a lone gunmen who robbed a Sunbury bank Wednesday morning.

&uot;At approximately 9:18 a.m. Wednesday, an individual entered the First Citizens Bank in Sunbury and ordered a teller to give him cash,&uot; Webb said. &uot;The individual was armed with what was described as a long barrel shotgun.&uot;

Webb said bank employees described the suspect as a black male, approximately 6 foot 2 inches to 6 foot 4 inches tall.

The suspect was wearing blue jeans, work boots, a hooded sweatshirt, gloves and a baseball cap.

The robber also had a mask covering the lower part of his face.

No one was injured during the robbery.

After the teller put an undisclosed amount of cash into a blue pillowcase given to her by the suspect, the bank robber exited the bank and was last seen heading north on N.C. 32 toward Virginia in a metallic gray or silver Chrysler 300.

The getaway car had a Maryland license plate, which authorities later determined to be stolen.

&uot;The license plate belonged to the owner of a pickup truck in Maryland,&uot; Webb said. &uot;We have already contacted that individual and he is assisting us in our investigation.&uot;

Webb also confirmed that the weapon believed to have been used in the robbery was found about a mile north of the bank Wednesday afternoon.

&uot;A local farmer working on Kellogg’s Fork Road found the shotgun later that day,&uot; Webb said. &uot;The farmer immediately contacted the sheriff’s office.&uot;

Webb explained that the weapon was one of two stolen from a residence on Gatlington Road in Boonetown, Tuesday.

Webb said another lead developed when a bank bag and a dye pack were found in Virginia.

&uot;We received a phone call from Portsmouth concerning a possible break in the case,&uot; Webb said. &uot;A retired law enforcement officer found the evidence after it had been discarded by the suspect.&uot;

Webb said that Chief Deputy William Spruill of the Gates County Sheriff’s Office and Agent Daniel Snow of the Elizabeth City F.B.I. office were the lead investigators on the case.

Anyone with information concerning Wednesday’s bank robbery are asked to call the Gates County Sheriff’s Office at (252) 257 – 0210 or the Elizabeth City office of the F.B.I. at (252) 335-0800.