Dave St. Pierre, photo
SWANTON — A Swanton man was arrested Tuesday after allegedly attempting to rob the U.S. Post Office here.
According to Swanton Village Police Chief Leonard “Joey” Stell, the primary suspect, Matthew Greenan, 31, rode his bicycle through freshly fallen snow from the post office directly to his home on First Street, less than a half mile away.
Police were alerted to the attempted robbery at 4:51 p.m. While officers interviewed witnesses, the U.S. Border Patrol followed the bicycle track to Greenan’s home, where they waited outside.
Greenan also left behind an item at the scene and the Vermont State Police K9 unit was able to use its scent to track Greenan from the post office, said Stell.
Witnesses told police a masked man in dark-colored clothing entered the post office brandishing a knife.
The suspect had tossed a bag to the postal employee and demanded cash. The postal employee refused to hand over any money, and the knife-brandishing suspect became agitated and threatening. The suspect, described as being about 5 feet 10 inches tall, then fled on a dark-colored mountain bicycle, heading east on Canada Street, added police.
During the course of the investigation, police discovered and then alleged that Greenan had passed a counterfeit $20 bill at the Swanton Beverage Mart.
Greenan was in possession of a counterfeit bill at the time of arrest, according to Stell. “He wouldn’t disclose to us how the bills came into his possession,” said Stell.
Greenan has a criminal record, said Stell, and is being held at the Northwest State Correctional Facility. He was scheduled to be arraigned today.
There is also the possibility of federal charges for attempted robbery of the U.S. government and passing counterfeit currency.