Police have launched a manhunt for three raiders who attempted to steal cash from a security guard while armed with an axe outside a bank in the Black Country.
Officers were called to Barclays Bank on the corner of High Street and Union Street in Dudley.
The guard managed to fight off the men – and the offenders fled the scene empty handed in a white Ford Transit van.
The vehicle was later discovered abandoned.
A petrol-powered disc cutter along with a black box was left in the road cordoned off by police as they investigated the scene. The attempted robbery happened yesterday at 10.15am.
A manager of a shop in High Street described how two women ran into his store screaming that the security guard was being attacked by three men with an axe.
The man, who did not want to be named, said: “I went outside and there were three of them around the security guard, they had managed to take his hat off and were trying to get to the box.
“But they soon gave up and got in the van which drove off toward the market. I saw it had a motorbike in the back.”
Inspector Julie Mason, from Dudley Police, said: “An investigation has been launched into this attempted robbery and we are keen to hear from anyone who would have been in the area at the time.”
"Dudley High Street is bound to have been busy and people will no doubt have seen these men arriving at the scene and fleeing the area after failing in their attempts to grab the cash box.
"Thankfully no one was seriously hurt."
In December, a robber armed with a knife threatened a security guard and demanded cash in a raid on a bank in Staffordshire.
The robbery happened at Barclays Bank at Sankey’s Corner, Chase Terrace.
When the security guard stepped out of the vehicle, he was approached by a man wearing a balaclava who threatened him with a knife before making off with a dark grey box with an undisclosed amount of money.
Meanwhile in August, a security guard was also robbed outside Barclays Bank in Aston Street, Shifnal.
One man remained in a getaway car while the other confronted the security officer, threatening him with a hammer.