A longtime employee of the Capawock movie theatre, known to many as George the ticket man, was robbed by two unknown assailants Tuesday evening while dropping off receipts for the evening in a nearby overnight bank deposit box.
Tisbury police chief John Cashin said George Buckley, 79, of Lagoon Pond Road, was robbed around 8:35 p.m. by two young males as he approached the night deposit box at the Martha’s Vineyard Savings Bank branch at 65 Main street — about two blocks from the theatre.
Mr. Buckley was not injured in the attack.
Reached by phone yesterday, Mr. Buckley, a former Tisbury police officer, said he was only a few feet from the drop box when he had the sensation someone was approaching him. He said he wasn’t sure what happened next, only that two young men came up from behind and snatched the receipt bag.
Mr. Buckley briefly chased the two men up Church street, even though he has had two knee operations. He has worked at the Capawock for 12 years, and said he felt compelled to chase the assailants.
“I’ve walked from the [Capawock] to the bank hundreds of times over the years, nothing like this has ever happened. So when it did, it surprised me . . . but I felt I had to get up and try to get the money back. It wasn’t mine,” he said.
Chief Cashin said a robbery on Main street was uncommon, but not unprecedented. He cited a recent incident near the Capawock just a few days before Tuesday’s robbery in which someone stole a 1999 Dodge Avenger that was left unlocked with the keys in the ignition.
He said the vehicle was recovered and there is no indication the incidents are related.
“These sorts of things are not unheard of in the rest of the world, and to be honest they aren’t unheard of here either. People should not assume that bad things never happen on the Vineyard,” he said.
“This bothers me, I won’t lie. This guy has worked for years at the theatre taking tickets, he was just doing his job when this happens. This department is taking this very seriously . . . [we] want to catch these guys.”
Mr. Buckley told police one of the assailants was wearing a white shirt and the other a darker shirt, perhaps dark blue. One might have been wearing a baseball cap.
Chief Cashin encouraged anyone with information about the incident to contact Tisbury police at 508-696-4240, or to call the department’s tip line at 508-989-4611. Police have also stepped up patrols in the area.
Mr. Buckley was back at work at the Capawock on Tuesday, and was back at his other job as a crossing guard for the Tisbury School the next day. He said he was a bit overwhelmed by the outpouring of concern following Tuesday’s incident.
“People have been stopping to see how I’m doing, which is nice. I tell them I’m fine. I wasn’t going to let this stop me. I was back to work the same night,” he said.