The Jewelers’ Security Alliance (JSA) is a non-profit trade association with 20,000 members providing crime prevention information and services to the jewelry industry since 1883. One way JSA informs jewelers is though their weekly email Crime Alerts. The JSA recently reminded jewelers of their recommendations of what to do in the event of a robbery.
JSA Recommendations: What to Do in a robbery
- Obey the orders of the robber. Do not say or do anything, or even raise your hands, unless told to do so. Cooperate fully and try not to panic.
- Do not attempt to disarm the robber or reach for a concealed weapon. Assume that the robber will shoot without hesitation.
- Never do or say anything that would anger the robber. Example: do not stare at him and have him think that you are trying to memorize his facial characteristics.
- The less time the robbers are in the store, the less risk there is of injury. Once the robbers have your merchandise, they can be expected to leave quickly.
- Do not press a holdup alarm, if your business has one, until the robbers have left the store and you have locked the door. If the police arrive while the robbers are in the store, or if the robbers return, a deadly hostage situation could develop.
- Expect to be threatened. One of the robber’s weapons is the fear created. Robbers commonly say: “I’ll kill you if you make a move!” This is a typical threat. Expect it. Keep calm.
- Frequently the robber will force the jeweler and his staff to a back room or washroom. Expect to be tied up or handcuffed, or told to lie on the floor. Do as you are told.
- If you are out of the robbers sight, in a back room or elsewhere, stay where you are. Do not intrude on the crime scene.
- Do not chase the robbers or follow them out of the store.
- Call the police immediately after the robbers leave and you have locked the door. Do not wipe or try to clean the cases or other surfaces, or otherwise disturb the crime scene before the police respond, because you may destroy fingerprints or other valuable evidence. Try to memorize all the locations touched by the robbers so that you can advise the police about possible fingerprint evidence when they arrive.
- Try to keep witnesses present until the police arrive. At the least, obtain the names, addresses and phone numbers of any witnesses.
- Do not talk to the media or allow them to film in your premises. Refuse all media interviews.
- It is important to rehearse with all employees what they should do in a robbery. Being prepared may help prevent an employee from panicking and provoking violence. Role playing can help in preparing employees to respond safely during a robbery.