Police are searching for an armed man who robbed a Skowhegan Savings Bank branch early Tuesday afternoon on Main Street in Norridgewock.

Somerset County Sheriff Dale Lancaster described the robber in a news release as a white male who is about 5 feet, 4 inches to 5 feet, 7 inches tall and of average weight. The man entered the bank shortly after noon wearing a red neoprene ski mask, a dark stocking cap, a dark jacket, light blue jeans and gloves.

The man brandished a weapon that appeared to be a semi-automatic handgun, jumped onto the counter and demanded that the bank tellers give him money.

With an undisclosed amount of cash, the man fled on foot down Perkins Street.

No one inside the bank was injured during the robbery.

The Somerset County Sheriff’s Department received the report of the robbery at 12:27 p.m. and sent officers to the scene. Maine State Police troopers, Fairfield Police Department officers and an agent from the Maine Drug Enforcement Agency also converged on the bank and aided in conducting a search.

Lancaster is asking anyone with information on the robbery or the robber to contact the sheriff’s office.

Christine Dunn, a manager at Ainslee’s II, a convenience store across the street from the bank, said that police told her that the suspect had fled from the bank on foot. Store workers saw a truck farther down Main Street slow down and think the suspect might have gotten into the truck bed, she said.

Dunn said she heard that police surrounded a person on Martin Stream Road but did not know whether it was related to the robbery.

Lancaster said police are investigating all possibilities.

Barb Townsend, who lives down the street from the bank, was walking her dog on the way to the bank when she saw the bank’s parking lot blocked off by police. An officer told her the bank had just been robbed, so she could not go in or use the ATM. A few minutes later, Townsend saw officers from the sheriff’s office show up with a police dog.

“I saw them running down Main Street past our house,” she said.

The dog and officers were seen searching for the robber on Main Street and Perkins Street. Officers also blocked off Stanley Drive near the bank for about 25 minutes.

Townsend said the Town Office appeared to have been closed during the day. When she tried to enter the office to pay for a dog license, the door was locked. When she went back later, it was open and she was told that bank employees had been told to go to the Town Office temporarily after the robbery.

School officials at Mill Stream Elementary School on Mercer Road were notified of the robbery around 1 p.m. and officials put the school on lockout, which restricts anyone from coming in or leaving the school, according to School Administrative District 54 Superintendent Brent Colbry.

Students were dismissed at the normal time. School officials called parents of students who normally walk home to let them know of the situation and that they might want to pick up their children instead.

A police officer was stationed at the school.

Staff writers Amy Calder and Doug Harlow also contributed to this report.


Emily Higginbotham — 861-9239

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Twitter: @EmilyHigg