New York Insurance Agent Charged in Bank Heist

January 26, 2009

A part-time insurance agent was arrested in his Rockefeller Center office and charged with pulling off a knifepoint bank robbery in the suburbs and making his getaway in a luxury sport utility vehicle, police said.

Edward Solomon, of Ossining, was accused of stealing $5,900 from the Trustco bank in a Peekskill shopping center Jan. 16, Lt. Eric Johansen said. Solomon used a knife to force an employee to let him into the teller area, where he rifled the cash registers, Johansen said.

Solomon’s economic circumstances were not known. However, Peekskill police Chief Eugene Tumolo theorized that in an economic downturn, “Many people who were living comfortably now will be driven to extreme measures as their income begins to dissolve and their style of living begins to diminish significantly.”

Solomon, 71, retired two years ago as an agent for Prudential Financial Inc. but was allowed to continue working with his established clients, company spokesman Bob DeFillippo said. Solomon was arrested at the company’s Manhattan office Wednesday afternoon and charged with robbery and grand larceny, police said. DeFillippo said Prudential was cooperating.

Johansen said police feel they know Solomon’s motive, but he wouldn’t disclose it.

Solomon was arraigned Thursday in City Court, and bail was set at $100,000 cash or $250,000 bond. No plea was entered.

Solomon’s lawyer, Vincent Briccetti, declined to comment.

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