ATM ‘obliterated’ by ax-wielding man

CHICO — An ATM in downtown Chico was savagely attacked and destroyed Wednesday morning.

The Sierra Central Credit Union ATM, located in the Lost Park area of downtown Chico at 352 E. First St., was attacked by a man wielding an ax around 4 a.m., according to the bank branch’s surveillance video.

John Cassidy, Sierra Central’s CEO, said that in his 22 years with the bank, he has never experienced a crime like this before and this was the first time he had to have an armed guard man the ATM following the attack. The ATM was “obliterated,” according to Cassidy.

Cassidy said that every morning when the bank manager arrives at work, she has to clean up human feces, used condoms, needles and garbage from around the branch and remove people sleeping there.

Chico Police Department officers responded to the scene.

“It costs a lot of money for guards and to make repairs,” Cassidy said. He said it will take at least a week to repair the ATM and will cost at least $5,000 to repair.

Sierra Central Credit Union has 20 branches located around Northern California, from Tahoe to Redding and south to Sacramento. The bank has existed for 66 years and has a billion and a half dollars in assets.

“I saw pictures of this guy taking a Lou Gehrig swing on this,” Cassidy said.

The bank remained open for normal business hours Wednesday.

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