Police Recommend No Defense in Robbery

I would hope that this is not the position of all (or even most) police departments in the nation. From the Modesto department:

Officer Scott Nelson said people working at liquor stores, like many businesses, can become targets of robberies. Late shifts also can be dangerous. He advises workers to do whatever is ordered of them.

“The best thing they can do is give the robber the cash or items they demand,” Nelson said. “But they can also be a very good witness. We tell them to calm down and remember descriptive information like moles or tattoos and describe the direction of travel when (robbers) leave.”

Calm down and remember the details of the person who just put a gun or knife in your face. Make your heart stop racing just because you want it to–and remember, the person doesn’t want to harm you, so not to worry. The threat against your person is just to get your attention. What they really want is the contents of the till and two bottles of Johnny Walker Red.

Unfortunately, as I understand it, these instructions are misleading. Sometimes, it is best to just give a robber what he or she wants. Other times, it will make no difference–the clerk is attacked regardless. The difficult thing is knowing how to handle a given situation–but telling someone that personal protection is off limits from the start? That’s not right.

HT: Don Surber

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