Bank robber charged

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State police charged an Eastbrook man Wednesday with robbing a Lawrence County bank on Monday.

Norman Lowe, 57, pleaded not guilty Wednesday at his arraignment on charges of first- and second-degree felony robbery, making terroristic threats, having a fake weapon of mass destruction, theft, receiving stolen property and disorderly conduct.

He is being held on $100,000 bond and a preliminary hearing was scheduled for Aug. 22.

Pennsylvania State Police and an FBI agent arrested Lowe at his Eastbrook home late Tuesday, officials said. Reports say officers conducted a search warrant on his home and found cash believed to have been stolen from the bank.

Police said at about 11:30 a.m. Monday, Lowe walked into the First National Bank on Harlansburg Road in Hickory Township with stockings covering his face, demanded money and told a teller he had explosives. The teller gave the man an undisclosed amount of money and he fled on foot west on Route 108.

Authorities said Lowe left a package that appeared to contain explosives inside the bank, causing the Allegheny County Bomb Squad to investigate.

The bomb squad used a robot to X-ray the package and found it contained an A-C adapter wrapped in tape, other items and a cord sticking out of the backpack made to look like explosives, police said.

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