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Details emerge in attempted Bozeman bank robbery

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Posted at 2:03 PM, Jun 14, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-14 16:03:20-04

BOZEMAN — Two men who were charged with robbery after hold-up alarms were activated Friday at a Bozeman bank are expected to appear in Gallatin County Justice Court on Monday.

Travis Wayne Irwin, 32, of Bozeman, and Avram Maccabee Orhai, 37, of Bozeman, are also charged with robbery.

According to charging documents, on Friday, shortly after noon, Bozeman Police officers responded to First Security Bank on Cottonwood Road for a hold-up alarm.

Shortly after, the alarm company stated that there were four more panic alarms from different zones in the bank.

When officers arrived, a cashier from the bank came out and told officers that two men, dressed in suits, were inside the bank, threatening the bank manager and threatening they may have guns.

After establishing a perimeter around the bank, two men dressed in suits exited the east entrance and were detained by officers. No weapons were located on either man.

Irwin was found to be on felony probation in Gallatin County and both men were taken to the Gallatin County Detention Center for interviews.

During his interview, Irwin told detectives that he was picked up by Orhai that morning and was given a ride to a nearby auto dealer.

Both men told detectives that Irwin was intending to purchase a new pickup and that his former employer had given him permission to purchase anything he wanted using the business owner's account.

The owner had filed a report the day prior that Irwin had been trying to access the business account via fraudulent means to take money.

The salesmen would not sell Irwin the vehicle, valued at $56,885, so the men went across the street to First Security Bank in an attempt to get the money needed to purchase the vehicle.

Once inside, the men asked to see the bank president. Irwin reportedly demanded that the bank manager give him $150,000 from his employer’s account. He told detectives that giving his employer’s name alone should have been reason enough for the bank to withdraw the funds.

When the bank manager told Irwin that banking transactions did not work that way, Irwin reportedly reached his right hand into the left side of his suit jacket as if to grab for a firearm, while telling the manager: “Tell them you got robbed at gunpoint if you have to.”

After not receiving any money from the bank, both men walked out to “smoke a cigarette” and were taken into custody.