Man phones bomb threat before robbery

November 22, 2010 9:34:34 AM PST
A robber who thought he had the perfect plan to hold up a bank is now under arrest. He tried to distract police officers, keeping them busy elsewhere. But there's something he hadn't taken into account.

Suffolk County police arrested 22-year-old Alexander Haje, of South Setauket, for allegedly robbing a Bank of Smithtown branch in Centereach Monday morning.

Authorities say Haje entered the bank, located at 1919 Route 25, and approached a teller at 9:54 a.m. They say he displayed what appeared to be a black semi-automatic handgun and handed the teller a note demanding cash and threatening to shoot if the teller did not comply. The teller complied with the robber's demands, gave him cash from the drawer and activated the silent alarm.

Authorities say Haje first phoned in a bomb threat to the nearby Smith Haven Mall in an effort to have officers move out of the area of the bank. Unfortunately for Haje, authorities say the officers responding to the threat were coming from a different area than those who responded to the bank.

Officers at the bank received a description of the robber from a bank employee. They began searching for the suspect in the area and eventually found Haje "acting suspicious" at the corner of Eastwood Boulevard and School Street.

Police say Haje he had a knife protruding from his pocket and dark-colored makeup on his face. Upon further investigation, they say Haje was found to be in possession of an inoperable black pellet pistol that resembled a semi-automatic handgun, a wig and proceeds from the bank robbery.

Haje is now charged with one count of second-degree robbery and one count of second-degree falsely reporting an incident.

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WEB PRODUCED BY: Bill King


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