Police discover tunnel leading from wooded area to Pembroke Pines bank

Sinkhole in road leads to discovery of tunnel stretching to Chase branch

By Peter Burke - Local10.com Managing Editor, Todd Tongen - Anchor/Reporter

The FBI is now investigating after the apparent work of a burrowing would-be bank robber was discovered beneath the entrance to a Pembroke Pines shopping center.

Pembroke Pines police received a call Wednesday morning about a possible sinkhole at the perimeter entrance to the Flamingo Pines shopping plaza.

When officers arrived, they found a hole in the pavement leading to a tunnel that stretched from a nearby wooded area toward a Chase branch in the plaza.

FBI Special Agent Michael Leverock said the tunnel was 2 to 4 feet in diameter and at least 50 yards long.

"I would like to say I saw something like this in the movies," FBI Special Agent Michael Leverock said. "However, this hole is so small. It is unique."

A detective shines a flashlight into a hole exposing a tunnel stretching from a nearby wooded area to a Chase branch on the other side of the road in Pembroke Pines.

Police cut the fence line and found the entrance to the tunnel, which was covered by a wooden pallet.

Inside the tunnel, police found a pair of muddy boots, a small homemade ladder and stool, digging tools and a small Honda generator.

"These people were using pickaxes and a small little wagon," Leverock said.

A Honda generator and some muddy boots were found at the entrance to the tunnel in a wooded area in Pembroke Pines.

Police used a remote control rover to follow the tunnel, which stretched under the road toward the drive-up window of the bank.

Investigators used spray paint to mark the areas where the tunnel appears to divert around a cement light pole. Public works employees were digging in the area where the tunnel possibly ends.

Although the bank remains open, the drive-up window is closed.

This Chase branch on the corner of Pines Boulevard and Flamingo Road is now a crime scene after a tunnel leading toward the bank was discovered.

Police have turned the investigation over to the FBI.

Leverock said the bank was never breached and no money was taken.

"We did not find a body in the hole," Leverock said. "We don't know who is behind this at this time. They could have been here a week ago, last night. We don't know at this time."

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