A small amount of planning, may assist in reducing the risks of armed robbery to your store and increase the chances of prosecution of robbers. The aim of any planning in dealing with armed robbery should be for the:
* Safety ofemployeesand customers. * Reduction in the property stolen. * Early arrest of the offender.
- Be alert to strangers or individuals who may be observing your business or who are asking questions about how your business runs.
- Ensure all back and side doors and windows are kept secure.
- Do not discuss cash holdings or movements of cash in public.
- Reduce cash held at counters to a workable minimum.
- Install a safe in close proximity to the cash register which is secured to a sturdy fixture or remove cash to a secure area.
- Designate safe areas and escape routes for you and your employees.
- Make use of signage and stickers both inside and outside your business promoting security measures such as; time delay locks, video surveillance and minimum cash held on premises.
- Consider the installation of additional security devices such as duress / panic buttons and Closed Circuit Television (CCTV).
- Ensure employees are aware of security and armed robbery procedures and what to do in the case of such an event.
- Lock the rear entrance if working alone, prior to delivery, employees arriving and once break up is completed.
DURING AN ARMED ROBBERY
- Try to remain calm, assess the situation, and do exactly as the offender says. Remember the number one priority is your safety, the safety of other employees and customers.
- Activate alarm devices as soon as possible, but only if it is safe to do so.
- Always remember that the offender will be nervous and tense so explain any movements and avoid any sudden actions.
- Speak only when spoken to as any conversation with the offender will prolong the incident.
- Avoid eye contact with the offender.
- Note the offender/s conversation including any indecent language, accent, nicknames or speech impediments.
- Unless otherwise ordered, continually watch offender/s making a mental note of their description especially scars, tattoos and any other prominent features.
- Observe and take note of weapons that are being used.
- Observe the direction of travel taken by the offender/s when they leave the premises.
- Look to see if a vehicle has been used and if there are any other occupants.
- Never take drastic action during the robbery and do not chase the offender.
AFTER THE ROBBERY
- Immediately telephone the Police on Triple Zero (000) (even if you have activated hold up or duress alarms), giving;
- Name and exact location of where the crime occurred including closest intersecting street and name of retail outlet.
- Date/time/nature of offence.
- Persons injured and whether medical assistance is required.
- Type of weapon used.
- Number and description of offender/s including any vehicles used.
- Direction of travel.
- Only hang up the telephone when told to do so and stay off the phone until police arrive unless you remember additional information that may be important.
- Close the premises to the public and keep unauthorised persons out.
- Make sure that no person touches or moves any items where the offender/s was / were present.
- Consider arranging someone to meet police outside, particularly in large shopping areas to make the response more efficient.
- Have witnesses and customers remain until the Police arrive – failing that, obtain their names, addresses and telephone numbers.
- Make sure witnesses are isolated from each other.
- Witnesses should independently try to write a full description of offender/s and what actually occurred in as much detail as possible. (Refer to the Description Form from the ‘Aggressive Persons’ section.)
- Do not make any statements to the media before discussing the matter with police.
- Supply all details to police no matter how insignificant they appear to you. This may also include earlier suspicious customers, rude, drunk or drug affected customers, cars constantly driving past etc.