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SANDY DAD FOILS HOLDUP TRY BY FLEEING BANK MACHINE

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A would-be robber shot at a Sandy family Monday, shattering their van windows as they sped from the automated-teller machine where he appeared.

A 43-year-old Sandy man had leaned out his window to make a deposit at the Zions First National Bank automated-teller machine, 10600 S. 150 West, about 7:30 p.m. when the masked man appeared beside the window, brandishing a gun.The man said, "Give it up," the family told police.

"I have to give him credit. He had tenacity," Sandy officer Tim Berhow said of the father. "He put the vehicle in gear and told the kids to get down."

As the family sped from the bank parking lot, bullets shattered their front and rear windshields, Berhow said. One bullet apparently went through the van and struck the bank wall.

The man, his 38-year-old wife and their three children - two sons ages 12 and 11 and a 6-year-old daughter - got away safely and called 911 from a nearby parking lot.

Police recovered bullet fragments from a .38-caliber handgun. The family described their attacker as slender, young and as possibly having brown hair.

Such attacks can often be avoided by using teller machines that are well-lit and visible to passing traffic. Berhow said he avoids using the machines at night.

"This is one of the easiest ways for someone to be robbed," he said. "It's far easier for (robbers) to do that than to go into a store and be exposed."

Such risk increases during the holiday season.

" 'Tis the season. During Christmas, there's a lot of money out there. The bad guys know people have got the money," Berhow said.

"It's pretty scary, especially when you've got your wife and kids in the car."