Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Holdup at Pasco ATM turns into a farce

NEW PORT RICHEY — Marc Strojnowski had just deposited one check and was queueing up the next when he felt something press into his shoulder.

"Give me all that money," the man with the gun said.

The robber's lack of perceptiveness notwithstanding — Strojnowski was depositing a check at the ATM, not withdrawing money — Strojnowski followed his instincts and hit the gas.

The scene unfolded late Tuesday night at the Bank of America at State Road 54 and Madison Street. It covered a few frantic minutes and several dark neighborhood streets, ending with a 23-year-old man in jail.

After Strojnowski took off, he said, the suspect car reversed out of the bank. Strojnowski followed.

He's also 23 and a recent graduate of the police academy. Once he completes his criminal justice degree, he hopes to get a job as a law enforcement officer.

He immediately dialed 911, but without a good description of the gunman or a tag number, he didn't have much to give the authorities. So he chased the car, up and down empty streets, peeling around sharp turns.

He was talking to a dispatcher all the while, he said. Left on this street, right on that.

At one point, he said, the car pulled in to a driveway and the people inside ducked down. Strojnowski took down the tag.

The chase started up again — now the car had its headlights off — until the driver pulled over and took off running, according to Strojnowski and a Sheriff's Office report of the incident.

Then the passenger got behind the wheel and started driving.

"He hesitated for a second, and then he just took off," Strojnowski said.

At the intersection of Trouble Creek and Rowan roads, the mad dash came to an end. With the car stopped at a light, first one deputy pulled up, then another, and then about six more swooped in.

According to the report, the person in the car — who was not named — gave up the robber.

He said he was riding with Vincent Neil Terranova when he pulled up behind Strojnowski at the ATM and brandished a toy gun in an attempt to rob him.

Terranova, of 4710 Deer Lodge Road, was arrested later at his home and charged with robbery with a deadly weapon and aggravated assault. His bail was set at $155,000.

Sheriff's Office spokesman Kevin Doll said deputies did not find a gun — real or fake.

Strojnowski said he's never experienced anything like Tuesday's high-speed chase, but he impressed himself.

"I didn't really think much of it at the time," he said. "But afterward I was really glad that during a high stress level I'm able to be really calm."

Molly Moorhead can be reached at or (727) 869-6245.

Holdup at Pasco ATM turns into a farce 12/10/08 [Last modified: Monday, December 15, 2008 1:46pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Rays send down Chase Whitley, Andrew Kittredge; add Chih-Wei Hu, acitvate Alex Cobb


    After having to cover more than five innings following a short start by Austin Pruitt, the Rays shuffled their bullpen following Wednesday's game, sending down RHPs Chase Whitley and Andrew Kittredge,

    The Kittredge move was expected, as he was summoned to add depth to the pen Wednesday in advance of RHP Alex …

  2. MLB commissioner Rob Manfred moves closer to wanting a decision on Rays stadium

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — Major League Baseball commissioner Rob Manfred called Wednesday for urgency from Tampa Bay area government leaders to prioritize and move quicker on plans for a new Rays stadium.

    MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred talks with reporters at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Wednesday, Aug. 23, 2017.
  3. Six home runs doom Rays in loss to Blue Jays (w/video)

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — A curve that didn't bounce was the difference Wednesday as the Rays lost 7-6 to the Blue Jays in front of 8,264, the smallest Tropicana field crowd since Sept. 5, 2006.

    Tampa Bay Rays shortstop Adeiny Hechavarria (11) greets center fielder Kevin Kiermaier (39) at the plate after his two run home run in the third inning of the game between the Toronto Blue Jays and the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Wednesday, Aug. 23, 2017.
  4. Jones: Stop talking and start building a new Rays stadium

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — It was good to see Major League Baseball commissioner Rob Manfred at Tropicana Field on Wednesday, talking Rays baseball and the hope for a new stadium somewhere in Tampa Bay.

    Commissioner Rob Manfred is popular with the media on a visit to Tropicana Field.
  5. Ousted to political Siberia by Corcoran, Kathleen Peters sets sights on Pinellas Commission

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — The perks of power in Tallahassee are a coveted chairmanship, a Capitol office in a prime location and a prominent seat on the House floor. Now Rep. Kathleen Peters has lost all three, but here's the twist: Her trip to "Siberia" might actually help her reach the next step on the Tampa Bay political …

    Rep. Kathleen Peters, R-South Pasadena, has been relegated to the back row in the State House chamber, moved to a fouth floor office and stripped of her job as chairwoman of a House subcommittee after a series of disagreements with House Speaker Richard Corcoran. [SCOTT KEELER | Tampa Bay Times]