Tilley: No robbery at Wells Fargo

Sherry Matthews Editor

September 12, 2013

What was first believed to be a bank robbery at Wells Fargo Thursday afternoon turned out to be no more than a misunderstanding, police officials said, noting that no charges would be filed in the incident.

It all began when a man walked into the Southeast Boulevard bank just before noon, dressed in what was described by bank officials as inappropriate clothing for the weather ( a sweat jacket with a hood) and acting in a suspicious manner as he waited in the lobby.

Clinton police Chief Jay Tilley said the man had a heavy accent and spoke limited English and became agitated as he attempted to communicate what he wanted, eventually demanding money in his heavy accent and then abruptly leaving the bank.

That led to the call alerting police of an armed robbery at the bank at 11:56 a.m.

Officers quickly surrounded the bank, closing it off and holding those inside the financial institution for a short period of time as the investigation got under way. Those inside were eventually allowed to leave the premise as officers began scouring the area for the individual.

Bank officials, Tilley said, provided a very good description of the man, and police were able to take an individual into custody by 12:32 p.m. at Smithfield.

“In talking with him,” Tilley said, “he told us that he became agitated as he was trying to conduct a transaction at the bank. He could not communicate with the bank employee and that led to a miscommunication and a demand for money. But there was no evidence that he produced a weapon while at the bank.”

The police chief said no charges would be filed.

“It was just a lack of communication,” Tilley said.