A customer sitting inside her car Friday at Fast Payday Loans on U.S. 31-W By-Pass watched as a middle-aged, unshaven white man casually strolled out of Service One Credit Union until he got to the fence separating the businesses, then darted away.
She had no idea she had just seen a man who robbed Service One minutes earlier.
“He walked right here to the chain-link fence that divides us, then he started running,” said Brittany Hardison, a customer service representative at Fast Payday Loans, which is next door to the credit union.
The customer, who Hardison did not name, had been parked in front of the loan business at the time of the robbery and told employees there what she had just seen.
“We have heard of it happening in many banks, but when it actually happens next door, it hits close to home,” Hardison said. “What if it would have been us.”
At just after 2:30 p.m., a man walked into Service One, stood in line behind at least one other customer, waited his turn for the teller, then walked up, implied that he was armed with a gun and demanded cash, said Officer Ronnie Ward, spokesman for the Bowling Green Police Department.
The teller handed over an undisclosed amount of money, and the man walked out of the credit union heading south. The man, who is in his mid-40s, was wearing a blue knit cap, a gray hoodie and black sunglasses, Ward said. Several credit union employees were inside at the time of the robbery. No one was injured.
Within minutes, city police arrived at the credit union, and officers began searching the area with the help of police K-9 Riggs, who was unable to obtain a scent to track. Two FBI agents stood in the parking lot as city police processed the scene and dusted for fingerprints on the brown metal frame surrounding the glass front door.
Police searched the wooded area behind Service One between the credit union and Royal Arms Apartments and briefly questioned an unshaven white man in a blue knit cap but allowed him to leave the scene. The man, who did not give his name, said he was simply out for a walk.
This is the second bank robbery this month in Bowling Green. The first robbery occurred at 11 a.m. Jan. 3 at First Security Bank on Chestnut Street. No arrests have been made in either robbery.