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3 Gunmen Steal $75,000 From Bank at Ralphs

March 25, 2004|Monte Morin | Times Staff Writer

Three gunmen escaped with more than $75,000 from a supermarket bank branch in Porter Ranch on Wednesday night after forcing the bank manager to open the vault, police said.

The men, who wore dark ski masks and dark clothes, entered the Ralphs supermarket in the northern San Fernando Valley just after 7 p.m. The robbers pulled out handguns and ordered the manager of the Union Bank of California branch to open the safe.

"At first, the manager wasn't opening the vault fast enough, so one of them fired one round into the wall," said Los Angeles Police Sgt. B. Grimes.

Witnesses told police that the robbers drove away in an older model blue Mazda.

Officers said the robbery was unusual for the amount of cash taken from a grocery store bank branch.

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