Los Angeles News

Search continues for suspects in East LA bank robbery

Thursday, September 06, 2012

The search continues for two masked men who kidnapped a bank manager in a bizarre bank robbery in East L.A. It's unclear if the suspects knew the branch manager.

Investigators searched the bank manager's home in Huntington Park on Thursday morning, but no further information was provided. Detectives left her home with what appeared to be a box of evidence.

With a security guard outside, the Bank of America on Atlantic Boulevard reopened the day after an armed robbery that involved the bomb squad. Customers said some tellers still seemed on edge.

"I even asked one of them how she was feeling, and she said that she was kind of scared. She looked nervous," said bank customer Marisol Moreno.

Authorities were called to the bank on Wednesday morning after the branch manager arrived at work with a device she believed was a bomb strapped to her body. She told detectives she was leaving her house on her way to work when she was kidnapped by two masked men outside her home in Huntington Park. She said the armed robbers ordered her to go the vault, get the money and throw it out the side door.

The suspects got away with what officials call "a significant amount of money." The bomb squad arrived quickly and removed the device from the manager.

"That is a very rare occurrence, to actually remove a device directly from a person, but it's something that the bomb squad investigators train for," said Capt. Mike Parker of the L.A. County Sheriff's Department.

They determined it was not an explosive, but was made to look like one. At least two other employees were in the bank at the time of the holdup. The bomb squad evacuated the branch and searched for any other suspicious devices, but found none.

Investigators are looking at bank surveillance video to see if there are new clues.

Anyone with information is urged to call the Huntington Park Police Department at (323) 584-6254, or Los Angeles Regional Crime Stoppers at (800) 222-TIPS.

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bank robbery, kidnap, east los angeles, los angeles news
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