A robbery situation can create an extremely unpredictable situation, putting both your staff and customers at risk. It is important that front line staff know what to do in the event of a robbery in order to minimize the chances of the situation turning violent.
During a Robbery
- Cooperate, do not resist.
- Always assume that there is a weapon. Cooperate to protect yourself, coworkers, and customers.
- Staying calm will help to control the situation and allow you to cautiously observe the robber’s characteristics. Try to gather as much information about the robber as possible without being too obvious.
- Never lock the doors. This will make the robber feel trapped and potentially escalate the situation.
- Stay calm; ask for clarification if you do not understand the robber.
- Do not surprise the robber by any sudden movement. Keep your hands in his/her view.
- Inform the robber if you have to reach for something or if there is another employee in the premises.
- Be as quick as possible, the longer things take the more nervous the robber becomes.
After the Robber Leaves
- Activate the alarm or call the police after the robber has left the building.
- Do not chase or follow the robber.
- Lock the door
- Call the police and do as they instruct.
- Follow your workplace policy for emergency situations; contact your supervisor or manager to report the incident.
Creating a Report
- If there are any witnesses, ask them to remain until the police have had a chance to take their statement. Collect their personal information for your report, name, address, phone number, where they were when the robbery occurred.
- The crime scene must remain isolated, do not touch or move anything until the police have given their approval.
- To keep the stories of the eyewitnesses as accurate as possible, do not allow anyone to discuss the incident until after the police have taken their statements.
- Develop an incident report. This provides valuable information to the workplace management and to police.
- The report should include information on the incident, the robber, and the names and phone numbers of any witnesses.
- Information on the robber should include:
- Height and weight.
- Hair colour and style.
- Skin colour.
- Noticeable physical features – e.g. scars, tattoos.
- Clothing and footwear – especially footwear as that will be the most difficult item of clothing to change once they have left the premises.
- Vehicle information – make, model, colour, year, licence plate (province and alphanumerical numbers), and direction robber has left travelling.
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