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Robber flees JCB branch with cash

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Nobody was hurt Wednesday when an armed robber made off with an undisclosed amount of money from a downtown Columbus bank branch.

A thin, white man wearing sunglasses and a black-colored “hoodie” jacket entered the Jackson County Bank, 400 Washington St., around 1:25 p.m. and displayed a note demanding money, Columbus Police spokesman Lt. Matt Myers said.

The clean-shaven suspect, who was wearing blue jeans and black tennis shoes, indicated he had a weapon but did not display one during the robbery, Myers said.

No customers were in the bank when the robbery occurred. Police declined to release how many employees were inside at the time.

The man, who wore a hood over his head during the robbery, left the bank on foot heading north on Washington Street, Myers said.

Soon after the incident, Columbus Police Department officers and a state Department of Natural Resources officer blocked off Washington Street in front of the bank with their vehicles.

Police release description

Columbus Police have released the following description of the man they say held up the Jackson County Bank at Fourth and Washington streets Wednesday afternoon:

Physical description: Thin, clean-shaven, white man

Last seen wearing: Sunglasses, black-colored “hoodie” jacket, blue jeans, black tennis shoes

Those with any information on the case are urged to contact the Columbus Police Department at 376-2600.

Police interviewed several witnesses who saw the man run out of the bank, but store owners on the opposite side of the street said they didn’t know anything was happening until police cars blocked off the area.

“I was just looking out, and I saw all the police officers pull over there (near the bank),” said Jay Cole, owner of Gramz Bakery, where customers mingled as the investigation continued across the street.

Police brought in a search dog to try to track the suspect, but the trail lasted just longer than a block before it was lost — not uncommon in areas where large numbers of people walk by, such as a downtown city street, Myers said.

Police began a grid search around the downtown area after the robbery was reported. They stopped a couple of people who matched the description but determined they were not involved, Myers said.

Detectives were interviewing bank employees and reviewing video surveillance in the bank with the hopes of releasing more images of the suspect, Myers said.

Wednesday’s bank robbery was the first in Columbus in more than a year.

“The good thing, and it’s the only good thing, is that no one was injured,” Myers said, “particularly when there was reference made to a weapon.”

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