Local News

Wednesday, Nov 25 2009 05:39 PM

Christmas present accidentally triggers bank robbery scare

By THE BAKERSFIELD CALIFORNIAN

Armed police swarmed around the Bank of America at the Marketplace Wednesday afternoon ready to pounce on a man who reportedly walked into the Bank of America with a shotgun.

The report was a bit exaggerated.

But it took nearly an hour to figure out how harmless it all was as even more misinformation was funneled to the police.

As nearby businesses were evacuated and major streets were shut down, people sent text messages to police that robbers might be at another Bank of America branch.

Police confirmed that wasn't true. They then telephoned employees at the Marketplace branch to find out what they were up against.

Nothing at all, was the reply.

So the police looked next door to Watson Realty and there they found a man who matched the description of "the suspect."

He did bring a gun into the office -- a Red Ryder BB rifle which was a Christmas gift he wanted to store at the office.

The drama was over.

Ming Avenue and Scarlet Oak bordering the shopping center were reopened. People continued with normal shopping and banking.

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