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3 Die in S.C. Bank Robbery; Police Seek 2

May 17, 2003

GREER, S.C. (AP) _ Three people were killed Friday afternoon in a robbery at a bank housed in a trailer along an interstate highway, authorities said.

Investigators were looking for two people in a red sedan in connection with the robbery at Blue Ridge Savings Bank, said FBI spokeswoman Kathleen Murphy.

The victims were slain with a large caliber handgun, authorities said. There were no signs of a struggle. ``This was a senseless, heinous crime,″ said Greer police Chief Dean Crisp.

The victims were identified as bank employee Sylvia Holtzclaw, age unknown; and bank customers James E. Barnes, 62, and his wife, Margaret, 58.

Crisp said an unknown amount of money was taken.

Police cordoned off the bank, located in a trailer along Interstate 85 about halfway between Greenville and Spartanburg. Blue Ridge Savings is based in Asheville, N.C.

Crisp said construction workers in the area told investigators they saw a red sedan pull up to the bank, then leave with two people inside just before police arrived in response to an alarm.

The incident was the deadliest U.S. bank robbery since Sept. 26, when three gunmen killed five people at a US Bank branch in Norfolk, Neb.

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