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Sunday, February 28, 2021

PNC Bank offers up to a $10,000 reward for Wednesday's Northwest 13th Street robbery

Update: PNC Bank is offering up to a $10,000 reward to anyone who can help locate the robber and his getaway driver.

Thursday afternoon, Gainesville Police released a surveillance video of the robber leaving the bank in a getaway car.

After taking an undisclosed amount of money from PNC Bank on Northwest 13th Street on Wednesday morning, the robber hopped in the passenger’s side of a white Chevrolet Tahoe.The car was stopped in a parking lot behind neighboring businesses.

Shortly after the robber took the money from PNC Bank, a dye pack detonated, painting the money, robber and passenger’s side of the Tahoe red. Bank employees often strap dye packs to certain dollars in case the bank is robbed.

When someone tries to rob a bank, as the man at PNC did Wednesday, a bank teller is supposed to give him money that was connected to the dye pack. The pack detonates soon after the robber leaves, shooting paint on the robber and the money.

As policy, GPD does not tell the public how much money was stolen during bank robberies because they don’t want other potential robbers to know how much cash is kept at particular banks in town, spokeswoman Cpl. Angelina Valuri said Thursday.

The paint renders the money useless, and if it gets on someone’s skin, the paint can stay on for days no matter how much you scrub, Valuri said.

Officers are still looking for the robber and the driver of the getaway car. If anyone sees a white Tahoe with red paint on the passenger side, he or she should call 352-334-2494.

The PNC Bank was closed Wednesday after an armed robbery.

An unidentified man in a ski mask walked into the bank shortly before 11:30 a.m. He flashed a handgun and demanded money, Valuri said.

Bank employees complied, and the man then ran east on Northwest 18th Avenue as officers responded to a 911 call.

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GPD set up a perimeter, and the Joint Aviation Unit looked for the man from a helicopter. The robber is about 5 foot 11 inches, and he was last seen in a black T-shirt and black pants, Valuri said.

About six employees were inside the bank when the robbery happened, but none of them were injured. There were no customers inside.

A woman in the office declined to comment Wednesday afternoon because PNC's corporate policy forbids employees from speaking to the media, she said.

The bank isn't big. It only has eight available parking spots. From 1 to 3:30 p.m., 10 people drove by asking when they would be allowed inside. Some parked and used the ATM outside, others said they would use the other PNC Bank in town, located at 4340 W Newberry Road.

One man said he needed to get inside. The ATM swallowed his credit card Tuesday, and he needed to get it back.

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