RCMP Cruiser Generic
(file photo)

A 34-year-old man is in police custody after a botched attempt at robbing a local bank and stealing money from an elderly gentleman.

William Joseph Lesieur was formally charged on Wednesday May 12th, with two counts of robbery and one of theft under $5000.

The incidents occurred at approximately 2:20 pm on Tuesday May 11th, at the Coast Capital Savings located at 6581 Aulds Road.

Nanaimo RCMP were initially responding to a report of a shoplifter from Sport Chek, located in the Woodgrove Centre.

According to police, the accused had allegedly stolen some clothing, and was last seen running from the store into the parking lot.  After unsuccessfully using a rock in an attempt to remove security tags from the stolen clothes, he decided upon robbing the nearest bank.

Lesieur entered the bank and demanded money from a clerk, but according to police, at the last second he couldn’t go through with it and he left empty-handed.

As he left the bank, Lesieur attempted to take money from an elderly man who was making a withdrawal from an ATM, but the gentleman had no intentions of handing over his cash. The suspect left empty-handed.

No weapon was produced in either incident, but threats were made.

The man ran from the mall and made his way to Staples where mere seconds after entering the business, Nanaimo RCMP had him in handcuffs and under arrest.

Lesieur is expected to make an appearance in Nanaimo provincial court.

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