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Police kill Sylmar bank robber

The unidentified woman had a handgun and presented a demand note, police say.

August 10, 2007|Ari B. Bloomekatz | Times Staff Writer

Los Angeles police shot and killed a woman Thursday after she robbed a Bank of America branch in Sylmar, but no one else was hurt in the incident, authorities said.

The unidentified woman, who was armed with a handgun, entered the bank in the 13900 block of Foothill Boulevard shortly after noon and presented a demand note, said Deputy Chief Michel R. Morre of the Los Angeles Police Department's Valley Bureau.

At one point, the robber jabbed the gun in the side of a female customer and escorted her to the front of the lobby, with all of the action caught on the bank's surveillance camera, Morre said.

There were five employees inside at the time and an unknown number of customers, he said.

About 12:40 p.m., the woman left alone through the bank's front doors, Morre said. Responding officers confronted her outside and shot her, he said.

Grecia Ramirez, 18, was eating lunch at a nearby restaurant and witnessed the shooting.

"It sounded like five to seven shots," she said. "She just fell back."

Shortly afterward, police started escorting people out of the bank one by one and searching them, Ramirez said.

The gun used in the robbery was recovered at the scene, authorities said.

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ari.bloomekatz@latimes.com

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