VAIL, Iowa --- Authorities are searching for a bank robbery suspect they say threatened staff at a Northwest Iowa bank with a Molotov cocktail.

The robbery reported Saturday morning was the third small-town bank robbery in the area in recent weeks.

The Crawford County Sheriff's Office said in a statement that the incident was reported at 9:10 a.m. at Westside State Bank in Vail, Iowa.

Sheriff Jim Steinkuehler said a man, described as white, in his 30s or 40s with a red goatee, threatened a teller with a Molotov cocktail but did not use the homemade bomb.

The sheriff says the suspect, who was also wearing sunglasses, took an undisclosed amount of cash and fled on foot.

Crawford County authorities have not said if they believe the robbery is related to recent bank heists in neighboring Sac County, Iowa.

State, local and federal officials are investigating robberies Jan. 11 at Citizens First National Bank in Early and Dec. 29 at Iowa State Bank in Odebolt.

Witnesses in Early described the suspect as a 6-foot tall man with facial hair and weighing about 200 to 225 pounds. The Odebolt suspect was described as 6-feet tall, in his 30s or 40s with a dirty blond goatee

An official with the Sac County Sheriff's Office said Saturday afternoon that no one has been arrested in connection with the robberies in Odebolt or Early.

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