A 71-year-old insurance agent was arrested in his Rockefeller Center office and charged with a knifepoint bank robbery in the suburbs, police said Thursday.

The getaway car was a Lexus SUV, police said.

Edward Solomon of Ossining was accused of stealing $5,900 from the Trustco bank in a Peekskill shopping center last Friday, said Lt. Eric Johansen. He said Solomon used a knife to force an employee to let him into the teller area, where he rifled the cash registers.

Solomon's economic circumstances were not known. However, Peekskill police Chief Eugene Tumolo theorized that in an economic downturn, "Many people who were living comfortably now will be driven to extreme measures as their income begins to dissolve and their style of living begins to diminish significantly."

Solomon officially retired two years ago as an agent for Prudential Financial Inc., but was allowed to continue working with his established clients, said Prudential spokesman Bob DeFillippo. Solomon was arrested at the company's Manhattan offices Wednesday afternoon and charged with robbery and grand larceny, police said. DeFillippo said Prudential was cooperating.

Johansen said police feel they know Solomon's motive, but he would not disclose it.