Armed robbers hit Newport bank


East Tennessee authorities are searching for two men who held up a bank in Newport

The FBI and the Newport Police Department are investigating an armed robbery of the Tennessee State Bank, at 107 Epley Road, in Newport, Tenn. which occurred on Dec. 26.  Marshall Stone of the Knoxville District Office of the FBI said two men, one armed with an assault type rifle, entered the bank demanding money.  After obtaining an undisclosed amount of money from the tellers, the two are believed to have fled in a silver SUV. 

According to police dispatches, the men wearing masks held a police officer hostage and took his service weapon when they fled the bank. The robbers had plastic bags covering their shoes to prevent leaving tracks. Cocke County Sheriff Armando Fontes said a Newport Police officer responding to the scene was taken hostage after a stand-off. He gave up his service weapon rather than risk harm coming to anyone in the bank.

The robbers are described as white males. One appeared to be in his mid-30′s, five-foot-10  to 6′, slender, wearing a dark long-sleeve shirt, dark pants, dark gloves, dark toboggan, and armed with a black rifle. The second suspect appeared to be in his mid-20′s, approximately 5-foot-8, medium build, wearing a dark hood, dark pants, grey gloves, and a dark toboggan.

Anyone with information about this robbery is asked to call the FBI, at (865)544-0751 or the Newport Police Department, at (865) 623-5556.

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