Traverse City State Bank, Grand Traverse Businesses React After Local ATM Thefts

Surveillance video shows a man stealing an ATM from a Grand Traverse County hotel Friday afternoon. Investigators say this happened twice.

The thief told two separate hotels that he was there to replace their ATM with a more updated one.

Instead he left an empty crate in its place.

Now both Traverse City Police and the Grand Traverse Sheriff’s Office are working to get answers.

Megan Woods has continuing coverage on what banks and business have to say.

“You hear about this happening in other places but to have it come to Traverse City, it’s disappointing,” says Nancy Haller, Traverse City State Bank Senior Vice President of Audit Compliance and Security.

Two ATMs stolen from two separate hotels at a time other businesses say was convenient for the thief.

Rob Hentschel, owner of Roy’s General Store says, “We were slammed we were as busy as ever, every single employee was at their wits end so I could really see how the hotel staff could really be taken advantage of, we were suffering the same thing here.”

Even though a crime like this are uncommon in the area doesn’t mean businesses and banks aren’t prepared.

“It’s bolted down with really long huge bolts into the concrete, if there was an office call on our machine the office staff would know they were coming and if someone shows up out of the blue we’d call the known service number we have on file before we let them into the machine to make sure it’s legitimate,” says Rob Hentschel.

Nancy Haller says a lot of Traverse City State Banks are built into buildings and they make sure all staff are aware. “Our technicians we know, we make sure they’re introduced to all the branches that have the ATMs and we deal with a reputable company. They have to have security clearance before they can even work on our ATMs.”

But two thefts in one day puts it in perspective for local businesses like Roy’s General Store.

Owner Rob says, “We’ll certainly cover general safety precautions with staff one more time. Just ‘hey if there’s anything weird going on call it in to the office, don’t ignore it or try and call it in to the office if it’s not something part of your day to day function in your company let the office know and we’re take care of it.’”

The thief is described as a white man, 6 foot two and 280 pounds with dark hair and a beard.

Investigators say he was driving an early to mid-2000’s dark four-door Chevy pickup truck.

If you have any information call Traverse City police or the Grand Traverse County Sheriff’s Office at 231-922-4550 or anonymous at 231-947-TIPS.

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