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Same bank robbed twice in four days

(ran SS edition of METRO & STATE)

For the second time in four days, a bandit stole money Monday from a SouthTrust bank at East Lake and Tampa roads.

No one was injured in the 11:39 a.m. robbery at the bank, 600 East Lake Road.

Pinellas County sheriff's Sgt. Greg Tita said the man implied he was armed, but no weapon was seen. A teller gave the man an undisclosed amount of money in a black, zippered bank bag.

Tita said witnesses saw the man leaving in a late model, red Chrysler LeBaron.

He was described as white and about 6 feet tall. He was wearing a black T-shirt, gray shorts and a black baseball cap. No age was available.

According to Tita, robbery detectives said it was too early in the investigation to determine whether Monday's robbery was linked to one Friday, but it may also have been a coincidence. The robbers' descriptions are different.

Friday's robbery happened at 11 a.m. A man handed a teller a note, saying he was armed and wanted money.

No car was seen when he left with an undisclosed amount of money. He was described as white, about 25 years old, 5-feet-9 and 165 pounds.

Bank officials agreed that the descriptions were different.

Based on those descriptions from bank employees, "it's a different person than the man who robbed it Friday," said SouthTrust spokeswoman Kim Horstman.

The bank closed temporarily for police investigations, Horstman said.

"Obviously, twice here in two (business) days is a little bit unnerving," she said. "We're just going to do all we can to take all the precautions to make sure no employees and no customers are hurt."

Sheriff's officials are asking anyone with information to call robbery detectives at 582-6200.