Police: Robbery, bomb threat related

FORTVILLE — The man who robbed the Fortville branch of the Greenfield Banking Co. on Friday morning called in a bomb threat to Mt. Vernon High School to distract police before the heist, officials said Tuesday.

Investigators had been suspicious that the incidents, both of which happened Friday morning, might have been related. The Fortville Police Department confirmed Tuesday the incidents were connected.

The suspect, who has not been arrested, reportedly used a pay phone at a Speedway Gas Station in Anderson to place a call to the high school to report the fake bomb threat.

While officers were dealing with the situation at the school, the same man is believed to have entered the Greenfield Banking Co., 111 W. Broadway St. in Fortville, where he handed a teller a note demanding money.

Police Lt. Patrick Bratton said Fortville’s detectives have been working tirelessly to track down the suspect, who kept Fortville’s nine-member department busy Friday.

Although the phone call to the school was routed through a Las Vegas area code, Bratton said detectives were able to track it easily to the Anderson pay phone.

Surveillance footage from inside the gas station shows a man wearing the same gray hooded sweatshirt as the bank robber. He bought a fake beard and glasses, the same set believed to have been used during the robbery, Bratton said.

“We’ve been working very hard on this, and I am confident an arrest is coming,” Bratton said. “We received multiple tips, and we’re doing everything we can to follow up on them.”

The suspect

The suspect is described as being 5-feet-10-inches to 6 feet tall, weighing approximately 150-180 pounds and being in his mid 20s to early 30s.

He was wearing a gray hooded Ball State Universtiy sweatshirt.

Anyone with information regarding the suspect is asked to contact Fortville police at 317-485-4044, ext. 117.

Caitlin VanOverberghe is a reporter at the Greenfield Daily Reporter. She can be reached at 317-477-3237 or cvanoverberghe@greenfieldreporter.com.