Man crashes car into bank

MIDDLEBURY — Fortunately no one was injured when a Toyota Prius crashed through the front window of the National Bank of Middlebury’s Court Street branch Monday afternoon, scattering glass in the lobby of the building.
Middlebury police Patrolman Scott Fisher said Emile Desautels, 87, was pulling into a parking space opposite the bank when his foot apparently slipped off the brake and onto the accelerator, sending his Prius into the front window of the bank. Fisher said Desautels was traveling only a few miles per hour, but there was no curb in that particular area to impede the progress of the Prius.
The vehicle crashed through the lobby window and into the back of a faux fireplace that probably cushioned the impact for the driver, whose airbag did not even deploy, noted National Bank of Middlebury President G. Kenneth Perine.
Authorities have not yet decided whether to cite Desautels with any infraction, Fisher said.
While the car’s sudden crash into the bank caused a stir for those inside, employees and customers were not in the main lobby area and therefore were not struck by the car nor hit with glass, Perine said. An insurance adjuster is due soon to inspect the damage. In the meantime, the bank arranged to have the glass cleaned up and window area covered with plywood. The bank closed at the time of the accident (Monday at around 3 p.m.) but was up and running the following morning.
Perine said he was pleased with the reaction of his staff, as well as by the prompt and thorough response by local police, fire and rescue officials.
“It was much appreciated,” he said.                                                                   
Reporter John Flowers is at [email protected].

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