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Man charged in Cherry Tree bank heist

| Friday, Sept. 20, 2013, 12:01 a.m.

State police have arrested a man for robbing a bank in Indiana County and fleeing on foot with more than $1,000.

Surveillance footage in Cherry Tree at both the First Commonwealth Bank and volunteer fire department helped police identify Thomas Leon Davis, 50, of Clarion Road, according to a criminal complaint.

About 11 a.m. on July 2, Davis allegedly showed a gun to a teller at the bank and asked for $100 and $20 bills. He then asked for more, so the teller added $10 and $5 bills, totaling about $1,050, according to an affidavit of probable cause.

He scooped the money off the counter with his hands and ran out onto Cherry Street, the teller told police. He wore a baseball cap and a camouflage jacket with a hood, the teller said.

Footage from three cameras outside the fire department on Cherry Street showed a man that matched Davis' description head toward the bank, then run across the street about 20 minutes later, according to the affidavit.

When interviewed by police, Davis said he went out to get the mail, but forgot the post office box key, explaining three times that he walked back to the house the way he came, before changing his statement to include passing through the alley near the fire department, according to the affidavit.

Davis said he got home about 10:30 a.m. and took a shower, police said.

Before the interview, Davis gave police two camouflage-style jackets. After a search warrant was executed, police confiscated six baseball-style camouflage hats, among other items.

On July 3, a camouflage jacket and bandana were found in a wooded area near High Street, according to the affidavit.

A warrant was issued for Davis's arrest in August, and he was taken into custody on Wednesday by state police with the assistance of the U.S. Marshals Task Force and a K9 unit from the Cambria County sheriff's office.

Davis is charged with robbery, aggravated assault and receiving stolen property. He is being held in Indiana County Prison on $75,000 bond awaiting a preliminary hearing before District Judge Susanne Steffee.

Stacey Federoff is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-836-6660 or sfederoff@tribweb.com.

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