Charleston police were looking for a man who robbed a Folly Road bank at gunpoint Wednesday.
About 1:45 p.m., a man wearing dark clothing and a multicolored bandanna over his face entered the First Federal of South Carolina branch at Queensborough Plaza, said Charles Francis, police public information officer.
The robber was brandishing a handgun and demanded money from a teller, Francis said. A teller put some cash in a bright pink bag. The cash contained a dye pack.
The gunman drove off in a white cargo van, Francis said. Minutes later, a white van was found behind the Tuesday Morning store at Island Plaza Shopping Center on Folly Road. Police said the dye pack exploded in the van and the robber may have red dye on his skin and clothing.
Police used tracking dogs and a helicopter to search for the robber in the woods and apartment buildings behind the shopping center. The Charleston County Sheriff's Office assisted city police in the search. As of late Wednesday, the robber was still at large, Francis said.
The robber was described as having a light complexion. His race was uncertain, Francis said. "They did not get a good look at his face because of the mask," he said. The robber was thought to be about 5 feet 6 inches tall.
Chaplain Rob Dewey of the Coastal Crisis Chaplaincy was nearby when he heard the call come across his police radio. He rushed to the scene and was among the first to arrive. "I waited in the median strip until I heard them say the building was clear," Dewey said.
He went inside and counseled some of the bank employees, he said. "It was a high-stress situation," he said. The bank has its own Employee Assistance Program and they were on their way to the bank to assist the employees, he said.