State, village police investigating armed robbery

TUPPER LAKE - Area police are searching for a man who allegedly robbed the Hosley Avenue branch of Community Bank in Tupper Lake at gunpoint Friday.

A white man described as approximately six feet tall and wearing a fake mustache entered the bank with a silver handgun around noon and demanded money. Reports say the suspect ordered witnesses to lay on the floor during the robbery.

State and village police are not commenting on the situation, although Saranac Lake Village Police Chief Bruce Nason says all area law enforcement are securing roadways throughout the Tri-Lakes.

"We got a fairly rough sketch from State Police in Ray Brook," Nason said. "Right now, we're just checking vehicles and cooperating with the investigation."

Reports say the suspect fled on foot in the direction of Old Wawbeek Road, toward Saranac Lake. State police officers armed with shotguns are manning checkpoints on Route 3 in Saranac Lake and Tupper Lake, as well as the intersection of Route 30 and Route 86 in Paul Smiths.

Facilities at Sunmount Developmental Disabilities Services Organization are under temporary lockdown, and employees have been provided with a photograph taken from a bank surveillance camera.

The L.P. Quinn Elementary School, located about a block away from Community Bank, was not in session due to spring break, but school officials have locked doors. Some employees were present at the time of the robbery.

Nason said only cars traveling into Saranac Lake are being inspected, and police are checking trunks and cargo holds.

Denton Publications will continue to provide details as more information becomes available.

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