A woman was hospitalized after two men held up a bank in unincorporated Murrieta today.
An employee hit the silent alarm at 9:16 a.m. at the , according to sheriff's Lt. Rick Young.
Two men went into the bank with handguns and escaped with bags of cash, according to police and witnesses. The identity and condition of the injured victim were unavailable as of publication time.
Joseph Sivula, a Winchester resident, was using the ATM outside with his 1-year-old son when the robbery happened.
"I heard the doors fly open, and they (suspects) went running out… they were running fast," he said shortly after the robbery. "They had bags with money flying out of them like something you'd see in the movies."
More than a dozen patrol cars set up a perimeter and swarmed the area while two bloodhounds and a helicopter searched for the suspects.
A woman who a witness identified as a bank employee was rushed out on a stretcher and put into an ambulance.
"I saw my friend from the bank getting carried away. That was really sad," said Juli Bullard, an employee at a nearby .
She first heard about the robbery from a panicked customer. "A customer ran in and said, 'Two guys walked into the bank with guns,'" she said.
Roger Hames, an employee of the next to the bank, said he believes he saw the bank get cased last week.
He was on a cigarette break outside the grocery store when he noticed a man walk out of the bank wearing latex gloves and cloth booties over his shoes.
"The only reason you'd wear them is if you're doing surgery, or if you're trying not to leave fingerprints," Hames said. "I had this feeling, I bet this bank gets hit, and look at it now."
Investigators were working on identifying the suspects around 11:30 a.m. today.
"We're still analyzing (surveillance video) stills," Lt. Young said.
They were exploring the possibility the incident could be related to one that happened yesterday in Hemet, though the connection is uncertain, the lieutenant said.
"We haven't been able to make the correlation just yet," he said.
Murrieta police was called in to help track the suspects. Shows told Patch his Bloodhound, Maddie, tracked a scent up an embankment behind the bank branch, in the parking lot of an industrial building. There was speculation a getaway vehicle may have been parked there prior, though that was not immediately confirmed by law enforcement.
The investigation is ongoing. Anybody with information was asked to call the Temecula Police Department at 951-696-3000.