Robber strikes Howland bank

By Nick Sambides Jr., BDN Staff
Posted April 27, 2009, at 9:53 a.m.

HOWLAND, Maine — The lone man who robbed a Bangor Savings Bank branch of an undisclosed amount of money on Monday probably cased the place for at least an hour before he struck, state police said.

Witnesses told investigators that they saw a man generally matching the description of the bank robber sitting across the street from the bank branch at 22 Main St. about an hour before the robbery occurred, state police Lt. Wesley Hussey said.

State police issued photographs of the man taken by surveillance cameras during the holdup. They ask anyone with information about the robbery to contact them, said Stephen McCausland, spokesman for the Maine Department of Public Safety.

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“We have some leads we are following up, but it’s too early to tell whether that will lead to a suspect,” McCausland said Monday.

The branch had just opened for business when the man walked in just after 9 a.m., approached a teller, said he had a gun and demanded money, Hussey said. The robber never displayed a weapon.

After receiving the money, the robber ran out of the bank and headed north on foot toward downtown, state police said.

State police described the robber as a man in his 20s, about 5 feet, 9 inches tall, weighing 150 to 200 pounds and wearing a black hooded sweatshirt under a camouflage-colored jacket. He also was wearing sunglasses that had frames so thick that they resembled goggles, Hussey said.

The robbery was the first of the Howland branch in at least three years. Exact numbers were unavailable Monday, but the town robbery is among at least 10 bank holdups reported statewide since November.

On April 21, a man entered the TD Banknorth branch on Union Street in Bangor and demanded money from a bank employee. The suspect, whose image was captured on a security camera, left with an undisclosed amount of cash and got into the passenger’s side of a blue SUV that was parked near the bank.

Bangor police applied for a federal warrant Friday charging a Connecticut man in connection with the Bangor robbery. That warrant is pending.

Seven bank robberies have been reported along the Interstate 295 corridor since November 2008.

Other bank robberies include those reported in Gardner, at a KeyBank branch, on Jan. 13; the Norway Savings Bank in Brunswick on Jan. 12; and at a Gardiner Savings Bank branch in Hallowell on Dec. 17, 2008.

State police see no particular pattern in the robberies as yet, McCausland said.

“It is hard telling why,” he said. “In the rash of robberies we had last year, drugs seemed to be a common thread through them, but it’s too early to see whether that is the common thread of these.”

Anyone with information about the Howland robbery is asked to call 866-2121. All calls will be kept confidential.

nsambides@bangordailynews.net

794-8215

http://bangordailynews.com/2009/04/27/news/bangor/robber-strikes-howland-bank/ printed on October 2, 2014