Police credit the actions of a quick-thinking bank manager who they say alerted police to an attempted robbery of Oriental Bank on St. Croix. The V.I. Police Department is offering a reward for the capture of the suspect in the case.
A spokesman for the Virgin Islands Police Department said the 911 emergency call center was alerted early Friday morning to a situation at Oriental Bank in Estate Diamond.
Authorities asked the public to assist their investigation by offering any information they have that may pertain to events that began around 2:30 a.m., Friday.
Police spokesman Toby Derima said an armed suspect is believed to have accosted the manager at her home and transported her to the bank at gunpoint.
“The suspect demanded that the branch manager give him money from the bank vault, however he was unsuccessful,” Derima said.
By 7 a.m., Friday investigators said the bank’s general manager showed up for work and noticed something was wrong. Police were summoned to the scene.
“While officers were outside, the branch manager managed to escape from the suspect and notified police of the situation. The suspect then fled the area in the branch manager’s vehicle with officers in pursuit,” Derima said in a statement issued late Friday evening.
But the chase came to an end near Annaly Bay, where the suspect managed to evade authorities. The FBI was also called in to aid the investigation, he said.
Police are now looking for a lone suspect, described as wearing a face covering, gloves and coveralls.
The Virgin Islands Police Department announced late Friday a reward is being offered for information leading to the arrest of the suspect. Police urged anyone who believes they may have seen or heard anything related to the Friday morning incident at Oriental Bank in Estate Diamond to call 911, the Crime TipLine at 340-778-4950, or the anonymous tip service, Crime Stoppers USVI, at 1-800-222-8477 (1-800-222-TIPS).