Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

Local News

July 10, 2014

Police continue search for bank robbery suspect

PRINCETON — Investigators continued Wednesday to search for evidence that could lead to an individual who robbed a local bank at gunpoint earlier this week.

An extensive search was launched Tuesday afternoon when a male subject robbed the City National Bank along Greasy Ridge Road near Princeton.

A white male wearing a dark green long-sleeve shirt with yellow letters, carrying a blue backpack and wearing a camouflaged mask entered the bank at approximately 1:30 p.m., displayed a semi-automatic handgun and demanded money.

An undisclosed amount of cash was stolen.

The case’s lead investigator, Detective W.E. Rose of the Mercer County Sheriff’s Department, said he was waiting for the bank’s parent company to prepare a CD of the local bank’s surveillance video and deliver it. Video surveillance records from nearby businesses, the West Virginia Tourist Information Center across the road from the bank, and other sources were also being reviewed.

Video from the Wal-Mart indicates the suspect could have left the woods near that store before going into the forest again. Another witness at a neighboring sawmill saw a male individual walking toward the Wal-Mart, but whether it was the suspect was not known. A report of shirtless hitchhiker wearing camouflage pants who climbed into a silver Trail Blazer on Interstate 77 was also being checked, Rose stated.

Rose said the suspect is approximately 6 feet 3 inches tall and weighs about 170 lbs.

Deputies and troopers with the West Virginia State Police Princeton detachment conducted an extensive search immediately after the robbery. K-9 units were employed as well. The nearby American National University campus temporarily went on lock down. It reopened approximately an hour later.

— Contact Greg Jordan at gjordan@bdtonline.com

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