Robber killed outside Takoma Park bank

A bank robbery gone awry Friday morning in Montgomery County left one police officer and at least two others injured and the suspected robber dead after being shot by police as he tried to escape with a hostage.
Locator map of Prince George's County robbery location.
Laris Karklis/The Washington Post
Washington Post Staff Writers
Friday, January 28, 2011; 10:19 PM

At 9:22 a.m. Friday morning, a masked and hooded man walked up to a teller at the Capital One Bank in Takoma Park, placed a metallic-looking device with wires sticking out of it on the counter and pulled out a 9mm handgun.

He pointed it at the teller and at least two other employees.

A customer tried to grab the gun. The gunman then pistol-whipped him so badly the man bled onto the bank floor.

But his action created a diversion that allowed another employee to run out and summon help.

"He took immediate action. He put his life in danger," said Montgomery County Assistant Police Chief Drew Tracy.

The incident would be over in 15 minutes - in the most dramatic of ways, under television cameras that broadcast the footage nationwide.

Police descended on the bank. But rather than give up quietly, the robber walked out holding a gun to a teller's head.

Police surrounded him as he used the teller as a shield. But as he stepped backward into the parking lot, holding the teller in an armlock and aiming the gun at her head, the dye pack exploded. Moments later, the gunman slipped on a pile of snow and that gave the teller a chance to slip from his grasp.

The robber chased her, but six officers opened fire at close range. He was dead at the scene.

A police officer was grazed but not seriously injured.

[On Saturday, Montgomery police released the names of the six officers involved in the shooting. Three are from the Takoma Park police: acting Lt. Tyrone Collington Sr., a 12-year veteran; Cpl. Thomas E. Black, a five-year veteran; and Private David M. Quante Jr., a five-year veteran. Three of the officers are from the Prince George's County police: acting Sgt. Robbie Loveday, a 13-year veteran; Cpl. Bryan Medina, an eight-year veteran; and Officer Osiris Lopez Jr., a five-year veteran, all assigned to the Hyattsville station. All the involved officers are on administrative leave, police said.]

The dramatic ending was set in motion not just by the actions inside the bank but by the location of the bank itself - smack in the middle of one of the most heavily patrolled areas in the region.

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