A ROBBER posing as a police officer kidnapped a woman and her young child before trying to hold up a bank.
Detectives said the man, who pulled up on Ash Grove in Wickersley in a car with blue flashing lights and told the woman and her child to get in, was one of three men being hunted over the raid at Barclays Bank branch at Stag roundabout.
The masked men fled after failing to get into the safe and dumped the Audi they used as a getaway car in Wickersley.
Det Insp Mark Monteiro, who is leading the investigation, said the 43-year-old woman was “distressed and shaken” by the incident and being supported by specially-trained officers.
The attempted raid happened at 8.30am yesterday after a blue Audi S3 Quattro pulled up outside Barclays and one masked man went inside.
A police spokeswoman said he had threatened staff members and demanded they open the safe.
“The safe could not be opened and the man left the bank empty-handed and got back into the car,” she said.
“It is reported there were two more men in the car linked to the incident, both with their faces covered, as well as a 43-year-old woman and her young child, who were then left in the Stag area as the three male suspects fled the scene.”
The spokeswoman said the woman and child were reported to have been approached around at 8am in the Ash Grove area near Wickersley School, by an unknown man claiming to be a police officer, who got out of an Audi S3 believed to have had blue flashing lights.
“They were told to get into the Audi and were eventually driven to the bank in the Stag area,” she said.
“Nobody was injured during this incident, or the subsequent robbery.”
The Audi was found burnt out in the car park opposite St Alban’s Church in Wickersley and crime scene investigators were examining the vehicle yesterday afternoon.
“This is an extremely distressing incident and specially trained officers are supporting both the woman, child and her family as well as the bank staff, who are understandably distressed and shaken,” said Det Insp Monteiro.
“We believe this was a targeted attack and I want to reassure the public these types of incidents are extremely rare.
“The three suspects did not use any weapons and nobody was harmed.
“We have a number of positive lines of enquiry that are being progressed by a dedicated team of officers, including identifying scenes, reviewing CCTV and conducting house-to-house visits.
“We would ask anyone in the Wickersley and Stag areas to consider if you saw anything unusual on Tuesday morning.
“Did you see an Audi with blue flashing lights, or were you near the bank?
“Any information you can provide could be vitally important to this case and we would ask that you please get in touch.”
No descriptions have been given of the men involved.
Anyone with information is asked to contact 101 quoting incident 162 of November 21.
You can also call Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.
Two arrested in Wickersley kidnap and attempted Stag bank raid investigation