Robbery Reported at PNC Bank in Clarendon

by ARLnow.com December 22, 2011 at 10:00 am 4,900 70 Comments

Police are on the scene of a reported bank robbery at the Courthouse/Clarendon PNC Bank branch at 2601 Clarendon Boulevard.

Initial reports suggest that a man entered the bank, implied a weapon and demanded cash. He fled after taking the money and was last seen heading in the direction of the Clarendon Metro.

Police are currently searching for the man and interviewing witnesses at the bank.

Update at 2:45 p.m. — Police have arrested a suspect in connection with the robbery.

  • ClarendonBlvd

    I live right by there – there are almost a dozen police cars outside the bank and nearby streets….

    • CrystalMikey

      Ditto…it’s practically right next door to me.

  • novasteve

    Does the county police ever think or say “enough is enough”? Do they even have any plan or whatever for dealing with these at least 2x a week bank robberies? Or will the police be used to make sure that nobody is smoking near parks?

  • JamesE


  • my bad

    man, i just used the ATM there less than an hour ago. guess the bank robbers got to get some last minute christmas money.

  • E

    I’ve said it once, I’ll say it again……

    ACPD is the softest bunch of policemen in America. Tighten up, stop hanging out at bars, writing parking tickets, and show you are worthy of the badge. They are so weak.

    • CrystalMikey

      Do you expect them to be just sitting at all the banks in the county?

      • E

        I would think that would be part of the plan, or something close to it, and I would expect them to just lose some weight in general, stop hanging out like 3 or 4 cop cars deep at a traffic stop of a 55 year old in a lexus on lee highway like they tend to do, because that is not neccesary.

        ACPD, no excuses, or just clean house and get some real cops.

        • charlie

          I think E is a 55 year old Lexus driver…
          if you live on Lee Hwy you would want cars going the speed limit or less.

          • JamesE

            Think of the children who play on Lee Highway

          • charlie

            well there are a number of schools ON Lee Hwy and there are a number of kids who have to CROSS Lee highway… so yes.

        • Autoexec.bat

          Between the hours of 7-9am and 4-6pm most of the cops are on Eads between 23rd and 18th pulling people over for who-knows-what. No turn on red I think…dozens of people every morning.

        • Josh S

          Blah blah blah.

      • Swag

        Considering there’s a bank robbery every couple days, it probably wouldn’t hurt.

      • CW

        If it takes 15 minutes to drive from ballston to rosslyn, then with four police cars you could have an officer 2.5 minutes away from any given location on the strip. This does not strike me as particularly ambitious. 2.5 minutes is a half-mile on foot at absolute most if we are talking about a very high caliber runner.

        By the way, when is any citizen witness going to step up during one of these things? Jeez, with all the ex military and young athletic people around there. Just tail him by 50 yards. If he’s got a handgun he’s not going to hit you at that distance even if he were to start firing.

        • JamesE

          Unless he plays violent videogames, they train you how to hit a target with a handgun from 3000 feet away.

          • R. Griffon

            Yeah, but if that’s the case then they’ve got to run over to your body to “teabag” it after they shoot you. Then BAM!!! – Tackled by ACPD mid-bag.

            It could work.

      • Yes. Undercover. All it would take to stop these robbers from thinking Arlington banks are a windfall is to have one of them captured or killed in a setup.

    • AllenB

      Do you have a tactical plan on how they are supposed to stop robberies before they happen? Or are you yourself just some soft-centered, doughy armchair quarterback who is frequently wrong but never in doubt?

      • FrenchyB


      • KalashniKEV

        I am off work all next week.

        In exchange for a lunch date at LimeFresh with Mehoo, I will volunteer to don my ghillie suit and stake out a location in or near an Arlington bank branch each day, IOT detect, deter, disrupt, or destroy Bank Robbers IVO North Arlington (I will not venture into South Arlington without a qualified spotter that I trust).


    • Arlingtoon

      I couldn’t disagree with you more. While I have had only a limited number of face-to-face experiences with the ACPD, in each case they have been extremely impressive; professional; and obviously well-trained.

      • E

        Perhaps in some categories. However, Bank Robbery Prevention crash courses and tactical plans are in much needed order. Go, respond, get in a shoot out, that is part of your job if it happens. Don’t be afraid that they may have a gun, just go and take them on heads up, because that is part of your requirement.

        • FrenchyB

          Wow, great advice there, Cowboy.

          • CW

            Says the guy who thinks the police department should not do anything to deter bank robberies.

          • FrenchyB

            Not sure how the police can deter a robber who passes a note to the teller, takes only the cash in their drawer, and is out of the bank in 30 seconds or so. It’s very likely that only the one teller even knows that a robbery is occurring until the perpetrator walks out the door.

          • CW

            They can deter future ones by aggressively pursuing current ones.

        • charlie

          Shouldn’t the banks have some responsibility? better cameras to videotape? maybe put up some fight before handing over money and making it so easy? Maybe a rent-a-cop at the front door.

          Sorry but bank robberies are equal, at best, to speed enforcement.

          • JamesE

            Did you really just compare bank robberies to speed enforcement? wow, just wow. Also I believe that murder is equal to red light running.

          • County Board

            Technically, you and charlie are both incorrect. Neither bank robberies nor murder generate any revenue for the county, so we treat them both with equal indifference. Plain and simple, those red light cameras are a cash cow and murder investigations cost money. Now if we could only encourage more of you to rat out your neighbors for any home improvements or other amenities we might have missed on the real estate assessments, we’d be much happier.

          • cdubs

            The bank employees cannot put up a fight for the money. Are you serious? So they should take the risk of getting shot for some money? There’s probably even a bank-wise policy that if someone demands money, you just hand it over. I used to work in retail in high school, and even they had a policy like that. $5000 isn’t worth your life. Idiot.

          • charlie

            just because people call you an idiot, doesn’t mean you should use the word to describe others.

            In order to make customers feel “comfortable” banks have forgone all sorts of requirements. Remember the little plexi glass shields? Remember the bars that rolled so no one could grab them and jump over? Notice all the poor quality pictures? Remebmer when they used to have guards at the branch albeit just sitting there?

            A bank is not a starbucks and it shouldn’t be so casual.

            And yes, I did compare speed enforcement to bank robberies. the police know where people are speeding. they don’t know when banks are being robbed. the police can catch speeders at 100% but can’t always catch a robber.

            And most importantly, who the hell uses banks anymore? I couldn’t tell you the last time I was in a bank branch.

            So yes, I think speed enforcement is more important than a bank robbery. It is easier to do; results in better return on the investment to the County; is predictable; and has more of an impact on the greater good of Arlington.

          • FrenchyB

            Yep – the banks want their employees to comply and get the robber out the door, to ensure no one gets hurt.

          • R. Griffon

            > better cameras to videotape?

            That’s what I’m wondering. It’s 2011 (soon to be 2012) … how come every pic released by these guys is a blurry pixelated mess? If you wanna be serious about catching any of them, then you should look into some cameras from this century.

        • Josh S

          “Bank Robbery Prevention crash courses”?

          Do you have a bone in your body that knows what the hell it’s talking about?

      • demonfafa

        Ditto. Always professional, courteous and don’t brandish their authority the way that other police forces in the area do (*cough*Fairfax*cough*).

        • JamesE

          I always enjoyed Fairfax county police officer’s brilliant tactic of tailgating you to try and force you to speed.

    • JamesE

      I suggest some ED-209’s patrolling the streets around banks.

  • E


    I have eyes and see these soft cops walking around. I also see lots of bank robberies in this tiny county. I also have income which pays men and women to wear a badge.


  • Grateful

    Based upon my amateur analysis, it appears that a large percentage of the bank robberies that occurred in Arlington in 2011 were located in Clarendon and/or close to the Metro. Maybe they could start by increasing their attention to these areas.

  • KalashniKEV

    I’m not taking as hard a line as “E,” but it’s time for ACPD to get serious about CRIME. Their leadership is failing them when women are being sexually assaulted in the early morning hours on jogging trails and they have 4 officers posted at the WESTbound ramp of I-66 making salary and benefits to look at stickers.

    It’s not the individual officers fault they are mismanaged and misallocated.

    • JamesE

      To be fair, last time I saw them on 66 it was one motorcycle cop. (thankfully he didn’t notice my lack of front license plate). However I will add I wish Arlington would have some loitering laws that APCD could strictly enforce, that is my festivus airing of grievances.

      • KalashniKEV

        Sorry JamesE, every day first week of December at the onramp past the Italian Store. 2 cruisers burning gas, 4 officers wasting resources.

        • Courthouse Res

          First week of December? No, every week… at least once a week. That’s my commute to work and they’re there weekly. One morning two officers were out there just talking, laughing, having a good ole’ time.

          • KalashniKEV

            Revenue enforcement is more important to their leadership than preventing crime. Don’t forget these are the same people who would rather “opt out” of enforcing the law than do their jobs.

            It’s time for ACPD to adopt a community policing strategy. You can’t do a full shift of police work from behind the glass. You need to get out of the cruiser. Talk to people. Find out what’s going on. Develop a relationship. Know what their concerns are.

            A culture change is needed.

          • CW

            Having real beat cops would be more effective AND would fit in nicely with the walkable little urban village theme too. Plus it would reduce traffic congestion with fewer cruisers parked everywhere. A win-win for everybody.

    • E


    • CW

      Yeah, you’d think ACPD officers would be bored of traffic stops and itching to make an example out of one of these punks.

      First bank robber who gets his head blown off for reaching for something after “implying a weapon”, I guarantee you that’s gonna be the end of this robbery spree.

  • courthound

    I was walking by and noticed about 4 police cars at the intersection of Clarendon and Danville and wondered, “was it was robbed?” Off to Arlnow to confirm!

  • BC

    “Implied weapon” seems to the firearm of choice for the area. We need a couple of saloons with swinging doors.

    • KalashniKEV

      It’s a roll of the dice every time. Sooner or later one of the victims is going to “apply” his/her weapon.

      • 12 year old boy

        That’s really funny Kev!! LOL!!

  • E is an idiot

    O yea…I would love nothing more then for the ACPD to come in and take on these bank robbers and get into shootouts during all hours of the work day. I mean I dont really care if there are thousands of innocent workers walking around Arlington…the cops need to battle it out by any means to get those guys…seriously, the thousand bucks the robber stole is worth the millions in litigation and civil suits from the bad guys family (or the brown flipflopper accidently killed) after the cops kill someone.
    Come on folks, this isn’t the movie Heat or the wild west. Cant expect cops to be everywhere….the banks that care pay for armed security…you dont hear those getting robbed.

  • The Gov..

    Maybe this bank will have some real camera’s inside!!!

  • Josh S

    I would love to see statistics showing:
    A) rate of bank robberies in Arlington over time


    B) rate of bank robberies in Arlington compared to other jurisdictions of similar size / density.

    Until and unless that data shows an actual spike or anomoly (sp?), all this hand wringing and finger pointing is a waste of time.

    To go along with that, you’d probably also want to see the rate of arrests for bank robberies committed in Arlington and / or the number of convictions for bank robbery committed in Arlington. So, if, for example, there was a spike in bank robberies, but there was also a spike in arrests, well then there would be less reason to find fault with the police.

    • KalashniKEV

      LOL. The perennial apologist.

      I’m sure you’ll be fine using the same argument when you become a victim of crime.

      “Sure I just got stabbed with a rusty screw driver 4x in the upper torso by a schizo-bum, but taking into account…”

      (would make a good comedy skit!)

      • Josh S

        Life is full of uncertainties. You can’t possibly account for all of them. Instead, you make the best use of the resources you have. How do you know what the best use is? You analyze the problem. Adequately analyzing the problem does not involve shoot at the hip responses to high visibility events. So, I say “so what” when seeing ARLNow posts about a bank being robbed. In the normal course of my life, I have no reason to stay abreast of bank robberies, police practices, etc. So if I read a story in ARLNow about a bank robbery, why and how could I jump to any conclusion about the event until I learn more than the skimpy details provided in a blog post?
        I’m not sure who or what you think I could be apologizing for by taking such an approach. The bank robber? The bank? The police? I don’t see how asking to see data about where the crime fits into the bigger picture involves apologizing for any of those.
        I also don’t see a connection between my comments and me being a victim of crime. You’re implying that if I was the victim of a violent crime, I would be crying bloody murder about how bad Arlington police were and calling for patrols 24/7 on the block where the crime occurred? Why would I do that? What good would it serve? How would it retroactively prevent me from having become a victim? How would it prevent me from becoming a victim again on some other block, in some other town, in some other circumstance? In what way could I blame Arlington police for actions taken by the “schizo-bum?”

        I think your comments reveal more about yourself and your own point of view than they reveal about me.

        • KalashniKEV

          The point is- ONE is too many. The data from adjoining municipalities and rate of recidivism, or whatever else, is completely irrelevant.

          I do agree with you regarding the analysis piece. No one has time for that nor is it in their interest (which is, I suppose why you called for it?).

          That’s why you have to be ready for anything at all times.

  • BlueSkies

    The staff at that branch are really nice – so sorry to hear they had to deal with that. Must make for a very scary workday, and then some.


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