Bethlehem Bank Robbed

BETHLEHEM – Area police agencies are on the lookout for the third bank robber to strike in Wheeling in less than a month.

Bethlehem police, State Police, sheriff’s deputies and the Federal Bureau of Investigation responded to an 11 a.m. robbery at the United Bank branch in Bethlehem.

Police said the suspect, who brandished a firearm, was seen driving a maroon, early-1990s Dodge Spirit. He is described as being approximately 5-feet 8-inches to 5-feet 11-inches tall with a thick build. He was wearing a green jacket, blue shirt with symbols, blue jeans, white tennis shoes, gloves and a black ski mask.

During the investigation, police issued a lookout for a maroon Dodge or Plymouth Shadow with Ohio license plates. An updated profile of the robber from police says witnesses could not determine the man’s race. The suspect displayed a small pistol reported to be no larger than a computer mouse.

Nearby Bethlehem School was placed on lockdown when the robbery was reported.

Monday’s incident marks the third bank robbery within the past several weeks in the Wheeling area, and the second robbery at a United Bank.

On March 25, a man robbed the United Bank on 12th Street at knifepoint. He was a white male, dressed in a green hooded sweatshirt, light pants and black glasses. In that case, the robber exited the bank and was last seen jumping a fence near a lot behind the bank and then fleeing toward Market Street.

Wheeling Police Chief Schwertfeger said the thief got away with an unidentified amount of money. To date, the robber has not been caught.

On April 4, the Chase Bank on Market Street in downtown Wheeling was robbed at about 4:30 p.m. when a man entered the building and acted as if he had a gun.

According to Wheeling police Sgt. Rusty Jewel, the cashier was unable to tell whether the suspect had a gun.

The suspect was described as a white man with dark hair, standing roughly 5-feet, 8-inches tall and weighing 145 pounds. He was wearing a red bandanna and dark sunglasses, a gray coat trimmed in black, faded blue jeans and black gloves. That robbery suspect also remains at large.

Bethlehem police asks that anyone with information about Monday’s robbery call the sheriff’s office at 304-234-3690.

Heather Ziegler contributed to this story.