HCPD: Socastee bank robbed

Horry County police are searching for the man who robbed the bank Wednesday morning. / Ryan Naquin

Andrea Crudo walked into the First Citizens Bank on Socastee Boulevard Wednesday morning to put her personal information into a safety deposit box and at 9:14 a.m., she says irony struck.

"Here I am bring documentation in to protect, and the bank I take it to is getting robbed at that very same moment. That's the irony of it," says Crudo.

Wednesday afternoon, Horry County police continue to search for a man who robbed the First Citizens Bank and was last seen on foot heading toward the Papa John's pizza next to the bank.

Crudo says she was shaking during the robbery. "He looked over at me and said don't move, and I didn't move. I stayed still until he left the bank. He kept saying, 'Hurry up. Give me all the money. Hurry up. Hurry up.'"

Crudo did not see gun or a weapon on the man, but she says she was nervous not knowing what would happen next. "You don't know if he would have pulled out a gun and shot each one of us. The bank vault was open. You don't know the extent. He could have shoved us all in there."

Police say the man verbally demanded money and said he had a weapon, but didn't show one.

Crudo calls the robber's demeanor strange because of how calm he was the entire time. "Other than robbing the bank, I wouldn't say his demeanor was threatening. But he was a bank robber, so you don't know what will come next."

Detectives think he may have gotten into a blue PT Cruiser. Detectives also believe that a dye pack activated once behind Socastee Station. They've recovered a small amount of cash with reddish/pink dye.

Detectives are asking any businesses who come into contact with money that appears to have a reddish or pink dye on it to contact them at (843) 915-5350.

The suspect is described as a white man, 35-45, about 5' 8" tall, and weighs approximately 175 pounds. He has brown hair and his face was unshaven at the time of the robbery. He was wearing a white baseball cap with a darker brim, a dark long sleeved shirt with blue jeans and black and gray sneakers.

Detectives are asking anyone with information on the suspect or the incident to contact them at 248-1520.