- The Washington Times - Thursday, December 14, 2006

An employee for an armored truck company is expected to survive after he was shot yesterday during a robbery attempt outside a bank in an Aspen Hill shopping center.

Montgomery County police said as many as six men are thought to be responsible for the robbery attempt, which occurred at 11:10 a.m. outside a Bank of America branch at 2101 Bel Pre Road.

The target of yesterday’s robbery attempt was a Dunbar armored truck that had just pulled up to the bank. Lucille Baur, a Montgomery County police spokeswoman, said two armed Dunbar guards were in the armored truck.

She said one of the guards was approached by two Hispanic men and that one of the men showed a gun.

“The exchange of gunfire began when the Dunbar employees realized that at least one of the suspects was armed with a gun,” Miss Baur said.

It was not clear who fired first and how many shooters were involved, but several shots were exchanged and police said one of the guards was hit. The guard was taken to a local hospital, where he was treated and released.

Police said one of the men involved in the robbery attempt also might have been shot. No one else was injured.

Two men ran to a nearby Sunoco gas station, where they joined some other men. The men stole a car from a woman and drove off in two vehicles. Police said the woman’s car was a teal 2003 Volkswagen Jetta with the Maryland license plate 7CA-N14. The abandoned car was later recovered nearby. Police said they still were looking for a silver-colored Chrysler minivan.

The men were described as Hispanic and in their early 20s.

The attempted robbery came one day after five banks were robbed in Montgomery and Fairfax counties. Three robberies occurred in Montgomery County, two of which are thought to be related. Police yesterday had not arrested anyone in those cases.

Two other banks were robbed in Fairfax County, with one of the heists resulting in an officer fatally shooting a man who fled when police approached him during the investigation.

Fairfax County police yesterday identified the shooting victim as Edward R. Agurs Jr., 39, of 1408 Bayside Ave. No. 9 in Woodbridge, Va. Police said that Agurs robbed a Wachovia Bank branch in the 7300 block of Richmond Highway Wednesday morning and that they found bank money and two box cutters in a backpack he was carrying.

Agurs tussled with an officer and fled when he was approached about two blocks from the bank shortly after the robbery.

Another officer saw him run into an apartment building at 7417 Fordson Road. Police said they found a door to a ground-level crawl space missing during a search of the building.

The officers sent a police dog into the crawl space and found Agurs hiding inside. Police said he fought with the dog, twisting its leg. Two officers entered the crawl space and ordered Agurs to surrender. When he refused, they tried to subdue him with pepper spray.

“He still refused to surrender and reached into his backpack,” police said in a statement issued yesterday. “Despite both officers’ commands to show his hands, Agurs refused and was shot by one officer. Five shots were fired, striking the suspect in the upper body.”

Police said they determined Agurs was also responsible for a Dec. 1 bank robbery at a Bank of America branch at 6812 Richmond Highway and a Dec. 6 bank robbery at a Wachovia Bank branch at 6300 Richmond Highway.

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