Search for Masked Man Who Robbed Santa Monica Wells Fargo Spurs Shelter in Place Order, School Lockdown

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Police were unable to locate an armed male who robbed a Wells Fargo in Santa Monica on Tuesday, despite an intense search that prompted a shelter in place order for some residents and the lockdown of a nearby elementary school.

The robbery took place shortly after 9:50 a.m., when a masked individual with a “shotgun type firearm” entered the bank near Montana Avenue and Ninth Street and demanded money, according to the Santa Monica Police Department.

Investigators released a surveillance image of the suspect entering the bank wearing a white Day of the Dead-style mask with a dark-colored hoodie and gloves.

Police say the robber made off with between $3,000 and $5,000 in cash. He was last seen exiting the rear of the bank and jumping over an 8-foot-tall wall, police Lt. Candice Cobarrubias said.

Officers responded to the scene within minutes and set up a perimeter.

Police combed an area that encompasses Ninth and Tenth streets from Montana to Idaho avenues. They have asked residents there to remain inside amid the search, and to keep all their doors and windows locked.

Roosevelt Elementary School, which is located in the 800 block of Montana, was placed on lockdown as a precautionary measure, according to the Santa Monica Malibu Unified School District.

The hourslong search concluded shortly before 4 p.m., and the shelter in place order was lifted.

“We understand this has been very stressful on the community and appreciate your patience and understanding,” police tweeted.

The wanted male was described as standing about 6-foot-3 to 6-foot-4, and weighing between 200 and 220 pounds, according to Cobarrubias.

No additional information was immediately provided.

KTLA’s Jennifer Thang contributed to this story. 

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