Device found Jan. 10 inside bank turns out to be clock

The US Bank branch in Sandy that was robbed 18 months ago and again 12 months ago had another scare last week.

A mysterious clock was discovered Tuesday morning, Jan. 10, inside the bank on Proctor Boulevard.

Not knowing if it was a harmless clock or some type of explosive device, the branch manager called Sandy police.

Sandy Police Chief Kim Yamashita was already aware that another US Bank branch in Portland had been robbed with the threat of an explosive device that same morning. She immediately called for the region's bomb squad and evacuated the bank. No one touched the suspicious clock.

'We just can't take chances with something that could be explosive,' Yamashita said. 'In our training, (our trainers) are very clear that if we have anything (suspicious) like this, we should not touch it. We're supposed to just call the bomb squad.'

The bomb squad, which has members from law enforcement agencies in several counties, was split that Tuesday, with half of its members going to the Portland bank and the other half to the Sandy branch.

In the Portland branch, the suspect left a package behind, and said something about a bomb. That's the same scenario that happened last January at Sandy's branch. At that time, the bomb squad used a robot to determine that the package was harmless.

When the bomb squad arrived in Sandy last week, it immediately went to work.

'The bomb technician came in and took an X-ray,' Yamashita said, 'and could tell that it was just a clock.'

No one could figure out how the clock was brought into the bank or why it was left on the table where deposit slips are filled out.

'We ruled out the cleaning crew,' Yamashita said, 'and the surveillance video didn't show that part of the table well enough.'

She said the camera angle didn't show people's hands in the area of the table where deposit slips are located. Because of the table's design, she said, it would be difficult to see anyone leave a small item very near the deposit slips.

Yamashita said the clock was intentionally left in the space where deposit slips are found, but no one knows why.

Any information about this case should be given to Sandy police by calling 503-668-5566 during regular weekday open hours.

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