Police investigate East Bay bank robberies

July 16, 2008 12:45:31 PM PDT
A man who robbed a Kensington bank Tuesday and may have tried to rob an Albany bank half an hour earlier was seen fleeing the latest robbery in a vehicle thought to be a Toyota Prius, Kensington police said today.

Shortly after 1 p.m. a man entered a Bank of America branch at 1516 Solano Ave. in Albany and presented a demand note to a teller, Albany police Sgt. David Bettencourt said.

Then, for an unknown reason, the man left without taking any cash, Bettencourt said.

At about 1:40 p.m. a man with a similar appearance to the first suspect entered the Mechanics Bank branch at 279 Arlington Blvd. in the neighboring unincorporated Contra Costa County community of Kensington.

The man allegedly simulated having a gun and passed a demand note to a teller, Kensington police said.

The man then left the bank with an undisclosed amount of cash and was seen fleeing the scene in a vehicle similar to a Toyota Prius driven by a second man.

The two police departments are working together today to see if the same suspect is indeed responsible for the robbery and the attempted robbery, Bettencourt said.

A security camera in the Kensington bank captured a clear image of the suspect, who was wearing a dark T-shirt and sunglasses, but did not cover his face.


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