TIFTON -- Police now believe that the suspect in a Monday bank robbery in Tifton may have also robbed another bank Wednesday in Valdosta.

Shortly before 3 p.m. Monday, a man walked into the First Community Bank on Second Street and passed a note demanding an unspecified amount of cash in large bills. A bank teller gave him an undisclosed amount of money and the man fled on foot. Police officers and deputies from the Tift County Sheriff's Office combed the area but the robber was never found.

Wednesday, a man robbed the Park Avenue Bank on Baytree Road in Valdosta using similar methods. The man gave a note to a teller saying that he was robbing the bank and escaped with an undisclosed amount of cash.

Police now believe that the same man is responsible for both robberies.

"We're pretty sure it's him (in both robberies)," said Det. Ricky Day of the Tifton Police Department. "We just don't know who 'him' is yet."

Investigators from the TPD and the Valdosta Police Department have been sharing information and video surveillance and have concluded that the same man most likely robbed both banks. The Federal Bureau of Investigation has also become involved in the case and will serve as the liaison between agencies investigating any robbery believed to be perpetrated by the suspect.

"I don't think we're dealing with someone who's never done this before," said Day. "I think we're dealing with somebody who knows what he's doing."

Another bank was robbed Tuesday in Tallahassee, Fla., but it is unknown at this time if that robbery is related to the other two. However, Day believes that the man may strike again.

"If he's traveling this much, he may go other places," he said.

In the Tifton robbery, witnesses described the robber as a stocky white man in his 40s with a dark complexion. He was wearing dark, oversized glasses, a white baseball cap with a black rim, a blue zip-up sweatshirt over a white V-neck T-shirt and dark pants. Some of the witnesses said the man "looked like a trucker."

In the Valdosta robbery, the man was said to be a middle-aged white man with brown and gray hair. He was said to be wearing a tan T-shirt and blue jeans.

"Anybody who has information, give us a call," said Day.

To contact the TPD, call 382-4321.



Brianne Sweetland of the Valdosta Daily Times contributed to this article.

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