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Bank robbery suspects in custody after manhunt shut down I-270 Tuesday -- Gazette.Net

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  • Tuesday, March 11, 2014 Share Comment Print

    Bank robbery suspects in custody after manhunt shut down I-270 Tuesday

    3 suspects in bank heist nabbed on I-270

    by Tiffany Arnold
    Staff Writer NBCWashington.com After police stopped all traffic on Interstate 270 near Tuckerman Lane in North Bethesda Tuesday morning, they arrested three men suspected of robbing a Rockville bank that morning.

    • Investigators leave the Wells Fargo Bank at 404 King Farm Blvd., Rockville, that was robbed Tuesday. Dan Gross/The Gazette
    After police stopped all traffic on Interstate 270 near Tuckerman Lane in North Bethesda Tuesday morning, they arrested three men suspected of robbing a Rockville bank that morning. NBCWashington.com << Prev Next >> More News Minority businesses make good headway Leggett says Montgomery will be cautious on restoring funding Court decision on defendants’ rights looms over Maryland judicial system Work group rolls out views on marijuana Metro seeks development ideas for Forest Glen Red Line station advertisement

    This story was updated at 4 p.m., March 11, 2014.

    Watch video at NBCWashington.com.

    Commuters hate traffic jams. On Tuesday, three suspects in a bank robbery did, too.

    The robbery was reported at 10 a.m. at a Wells Fargo bank branch at 404 King Farm Blvd., Rockville, triggering a manhunt on Interstate 270, said Montgomery County police spokeswoman Angela Cruz.

    Two men armed with handguns demanded money and left the bank, getting into a silver Kia SUV with another man, police said in a news release.

    There was no police chase after the robbery, but “investigative means” led police to I-270, according to Officer Janelle Smith.

    Smith declined to comment on how police knew the SUV was on the highway.

    Meanwhile, Maryland State Police asked Prince George’s County police to send out a helicopter to find the Kia. Julie Parker, a spokeswoman for Prince George’s County police, said her department was asked because it had a chopper closest to the scene.

    “A helicopter is the equivalent of 30 police officers’ view from the ground,” Parker said. “We become a force multiplier in this sort of environment.”

    From the air, pilot Cpl. Aaron Smith coordinated with police on the ground. The Rockville City Police Department and Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office also were involved.

    The police helicopter eventually found the SUV heading south on I-270, spurring state police to shut down traffic in both directions.

    According to the State Highway Administration website, the closure started a little after 10 a.m.

    Smith said the robbers tried to pitch the money into a dump truck nearby once they knew police were on to them.

    But police arrested the trio on I-270 near Tuckerman Lane in North Bethesda less than an hour after the robbery was reported. Officers didn’t even have to pull over the SUV because it was stuck in traffic, Smith said.

    The gun used in the robbery was found in the SUV, police said in their news release.

    Police also recovered the money from the dump truck, which was also stopped in traffic, Smith said.

    Police withheld the names of the men pending formal charges being filed. Surveillance images from the robbery were posted on the department’s official news blog Tuesday afternoon.

    Staff Writer Jessica Loder contributed to this report.

    [email protected]

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