PEABODY (CBS) – A Peabody man faces felony charges after allegedly jumping into a woman’s car and robbing her while she waited at an ATM.
Peabody police say Gerald Russo approached the 26-year-old victim just before 11 o’clock Monday morning at a drive up ATM at a Bank of America on Andover Street.
He got into her car and demanded cash. She complied with the request and turned over $200. The victim was unhurt and Russo ran away.
Surveillance video obtained by WBZ-TV shows the robbery happened quickly, in front of a number of witnesses, including a landscaping crew.
Russo turned himself in Tuesday and was arraigned on charges of Unarmed Robbery and Breaking and Entering to a Motor Vehicle in the Daytime.
The random and brazen robbery at an ATM shocked women shopping nearby and made them nervous. “Afraid, cautious, make sure I know my surroundings around me,” said Lori Houl.
Others said the attack at an ATM reminded them of the tragic abduction and murder of Amy Lord who was forced to withdraw money from several banks. “It happens more, I’m sure, than anybody knows about. But that really put it on the cover,” said Maggie Grout.
State Senator Brian A. Joyce (D-Milton) has been proposing a law requiring banks to have panic buttons at ATM’s for more than a decade.
He says these recent crimes should make banks and lawmakers take notice. “What happened in Peabody, which fortunately didn’t end in tragedy. But what happened in South Boston was just was a wake up call for every single one of us,” he said.