Police: This 19-year-old woman robbed and threatened to blow up a Norfolk bank

NORFOLK – A local woman has been arrested for allegedly robbing and threatening blow up a bank off Colley Avenue Wednesday afternoon.

Symphany S. Dawson, 19, of the 1000 block of West 39th Street, is charged with one count each of robbery, wearing a mask in public, threaten to bomb, and possession of a hoax bomb, authorities said.

Police said Wednesday afternoon once detectives have completed interviewing Dawson, she will be taken to the Norfolk City Jail where she will be held without bond.

Officers were sent to Southern Bank, 4815 Colley Ave. shortly after a report of a bank robbery around 10:35 a.m.

The suspect, later identified as Dawson, was found in the 800 block of West 48th Street near Killiam Avenue. She was taken into custody without incident, police said.

During the investigation, bank employees told officers a woman wearing a mask entered the bank, handed the teller a note that implied she had a bomb and demanded money. The teller complied, and the woman left the bank on foot.

There were no injuries reported.

When Dawson was taken into custody, police found she had a “suspicious package.” As a result, the Norfolk Police and Fire-Rescue bomb squad was called to the scene.

The road was closed for several hours while the bomb squad investigated the package, police said.

“Around 1 p.m., bomb squad personnel deemed the package to be a hoax bomb,” police wrote in a news release Wednesday afternoon.

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John Mangalonzo (john@localvoicemedia.com) is the managing editor of Local Voice Media’s Virginia papers – WYDaily (Williamsburg), Southside Daily (Virginia Beach) and HNNDaily (Hampton-Newport News). Before coming to Local Voice, John was the senior content editor of The Bellingham Herald, a McClatchy newspaper in Washington state. Previously, he served as city editor/content strategist for USA Today Network newsrooms in St. George and Cedar City, Utah. John started his professional journalism career shortly after graduating from Lyceum of The Philippines University in 1990. As a rookie reporter for a national newspaper in Manila that year, John was assigned to cover four of the most dangerous cities in Metro Manila. Later that year, John was transferred to cover the Philippine National Police and Armed Forces of the Philippines. He spent the latter part of 1990 to early 1992 embedded with troopers in the southern Philippines as they fought with communist rebels and Muslim extremists. His U.S. journalism career includes reporting and editing stints for newspapers and other media outlets in New York City, California, Texas, Iowa, Utah, Colorado and Washington state.