Man calls robbery a "joke"; Police not laughing - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Man calls robbery a "joke"; Police not laughing

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VALDOSTA, GA (WALB) -

A man accused of trying to rob a Valdosta bank says the whole thing was a joke, but Police say they're not laughing.

It happened around 5:45 p.m. at the Southeastern Federal Credit Union on North Valdosta Road.

Officials say Ivan Sumlin, 54, of Cecil walked into the bank, waited his turn in line, then handed a teller a note saying his intentions were robbery. Police say he then sat down.

The teller notified bank staff who then called 911.

Valdosta Police responded and arrested Sumlin at the bank. They say he was not carrying a weapon. He was taken for questioning at police headquarters.

According to a release, Sumlin told officers he was "only joking," however Chief Brian Childress says the situation is no joke.

Childress says police officers and the public were at risk when officers were responding to the 911 call, while employees at the bank barricaded themselves in another part of the building for protection.

Sumlin is charged with criminal intent to commit a robbery, and has been taken to the Lowndes County Jail. There was no immediate word on a bond amount.

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