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Local, state and federal law enforcement are investigating a bank robbery on Martha’s Vineyard in an effort to locate the thieves who are still at large.
According to the Vineyard Gazette, three masked men armed with handguns held up the Vineyard Haven branch of Rockland Trust on Thursday morning. The men reportedly tied up bank employees and escaped in a stolen vehicle that belonged to one of the bank tellers and was recovered. On Thursday night, the Cape and Islands district attorney’s office said police are still trying to locate and identify the suspects.
From the Gazette:
An image provided of the suspects during the robbery shows one of them in what appears to be a halloween mask and a black sweatshirt with a hood. The statement from the district attorney’s office said all three suspects wore the same mask during the robbery.
They said Islanders should remain vigilant, but emphasized that the crime was targeted.
“Island residents…should not be overly alarmed. This was a targeted crime and there is no additional information that should cause undue fear,” the statement said.
District attorney’s office spokesman Tara Miltimore said that the robbery occurred at approximately 8:15 a.m. Thursday morning at the Rockland Trust bank branch off the Vineyard Haven-Edgartown Road.
“Three unknown individuals rushed into the bank as employees entered to open the bank for business. These subjects were masked, gloved and armed with handguns,” she said.
Meanwhile, Tisbury police were unable to confirm what was stolen from the bank or what quantity. Fortunately, no bank employees were physically harmed during the robbery, according to a spokesman for Rockland Trust who said, “There were no injuries and everyone is safe.” Still, the spokesperson said the branch would remain closed as police continue to investigate.
“We have a detective and crime scene personnel responding and are preparing to transport K9 teams to the Island via our Air Wing,” state police spokesman David Procopio said.
But despite law enforcement appearing to pull out all the stops to find these armed robbers, investigators have been coming up empty so far. And we’re talking a whole lot of law enforcement.
More from the Gazette:
In a strange twist early Thursday afternoon, police who had amassed at a Falmouth Holiday Inn in search of the supsects later confirmed that their investigation did not turn up any leads connected to the bank robbery.
According to a report from the Falmouth Enterprise, the search in Falmouth lasted about five hours, beginning around 10:00 a.m. as SWAT team members, FBI agents, armored vehicles and a K9 unit were on-scene at the hotel. Falmouth police chief Edward Dunne said in a short press conference that the investigation turned up no leads.
“These three individuals, if anyone sees them or suspects they see them, please do not approach them,” Tisbury Police Chief Chris Habekost said. “Call the police. They’re considered armed and dangerous.”