SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Springfield police now say they believe that different men robbed two downtown bank branches around midday Monday.
The department has released surveillance photos from the robberies at the United Bank at 115 State Street and the Bank of America at 1414 Main Street. During the United Bank robbery, three suspicious packages were left behind; leading police and firefighters to evacuate the building and cordon-off the area.
Springfield Police Sgt. John Delaney says that during the United Bank robbery, which was reported shortly after 11:30 A.M., the suspect told the teller that he was going to blow the bank up if he didn’t receive any money. After bank employees surrendered some cash, the suspect ran out of the bank down Main Street.
About half an hour later, police received word that an approximately 5’4” Hispanic man in his 40’s robbed the Bank of America at 1414 Main Street. The suspect walked into the bank, and handed the teller a note saying that he had a gun. The teller gave up cash, and the man ran down Boland Way toward the Connecticut River.
Police searched the entire bank of the Connecticut River using dogs, and the state police air wing was also called-in to help. At the time, Delaney says police had not seen surveillance images from the United Bank robbery (due to the suspicious package investigation that was still going on), and had believed that both banks were robbed by the same man.
After analyzing the images, and collecting other evidence, Delaney says detectives later determined there indeed were two different suspects.
While the search was happening, firefighters investigated the three packages, one which was left outside, and two that were inside the building. After opening them up with water cannon, it was determined that they only contained bricks.
If you recognize either of the suspects, or have any other information that can help in the investigation of these two robberies, call Springfield police detectives at (413) 787-6355 or you can anonymously “text a tip.”