ATM stolen from bank

Photo by Laura Williams

Photo by Laura Williams

ALBANY, Ga. -- Albany police have recovered a stolen automated teller machine that was hoisted from First State Bank of Albany, likely with the help of a stolen forklift.

Albany Police Department spokesperson Phyllis Banks said that around 2:40 a.m. Tuesday, a customer stopped by the bank on Whispering Pines Road at North Slappey Boulevard to check his account balance and discovered that the ATM was missing.

The customer then alerted police.

According to APD Det. Tim Harvey, the stolen ATM was located later Tuesday in an area near the bank. A stolen forklift, which authorities suspect was used in the heist, was also recovered nearby.

The ATM was pulled from an island in the bank drive-thru and the theives used a forklift to place the machine onto a truck, then made their getaway, police said. The only signs of obvious damage at the ATM location were a gaping hole and broken bricks where the forklift had apparently backed into a brick column.

"Obviously a pretty big piece of heavy equipment was used to pull this off," Banks said. "We are going to review the bank's security footage, but some of the cameras were also damaged, so we don't know what we'll find if anything."

Harvey said the ATM was heavily damaged, but recovered intact and was not opened. Harvey could not say whether the damage to the machine occurred during the theft or during the thieves' attempt to break into the ATM.

Harvey said he hoped that someone saw or heard something during the theft and would call the APD to provide information. The detective added that the APD was unsure of the number of people involved in the robbery.

Banks added that the theft is still under investigation and that she would provide updates as they become available.