To Robber in Disguise, Bank Yields Big Score
By Clarence Williams
Washington Post Staff Writer
Friday, January 11, 2008; B05
A man impersonating an armored car guard walked out of a downtown Washington bank with more than $100,000 yesterday, and it took bank officials hours to realize that they'd been robbed, D.C. police said.
Police believe that the robber was armed only with a uniform that resembled a Brinks guard's as he entered the Wachovia branch at 801 Pennsylvania Ave. NW about 9:30 a.m. Bank officials let him sign for a locked satchel of cash, said Lt. William Farr, the head of the D.C. police bank robbery unit.
The man then walked out of the bank. Last night, police had next to no idea of whom they were looking for.
About an hour after the robbery, the genuine Brinks guard arrived at the bank branch and was told that another guard had completed the day's cash pickup.
Only after returning to his office did the Brinks driver tell his supervisors that he did not make a pickup at the Wachovia branch, police said. Brinks officials contacted the bank, and a branch manager called D.C. police about 8 p.m., almost 11 hours after the theft.
Authorities did not have a detailed description of the robber and did not know whether he left the bank in a vehicle or on foot.
"We're now behind. We're trying to catch up with everybody, all the employees," Farr said last night in a telephone interview. "[But] if we can get good pictures from the surveillance cameras . . . I think we'll get him."
D.C. police and FBI agents will canvass the area around the bank, hoping that passersby saw the robber leave the bank, officials said.