No, this is not some silly story about how I got shorted in my paycheck or how I had benefits taken away from me. If you read regularly, you know that I work at a bank. What you may not know is that I can fill any position in the branch, so if we are short help, that is where I am working. Today, like many recently, I was working as a teller. I got robbed.
This makes the third robbery since I started at this branch (Sept 2007).
I start work at 7:45 every morning, so this was a very long day. I had a post half-prepared about online calculators, but I guess that will have to wait a day, since I am exhausted and of course, I have to tell you about the events of the day.
Let me begin by saying, I am fine. Seriously, FINE. I can not stress this enough.
Here’s what went down. It was about quarter til’ 4, so I was getting ready to leave for the day. Honestly, I probably would not have taken the next customer (the robber) but he walked up anyway. There was only 1 other customer in the office, she was at the teller next to me. This is very unusual for my branch. So helping one more person would be no big deal, I greeted him and he put a deposit slip on the counter without saying a word. The counter deposit slip was up side down, so I pulled it toward me and before I could flip it over, I noticed writing on it. It read “give me all the money, no dye packs.” Immediately, I felt all of the blood rush out of my face. Then I looked up at the man, and was put at ease. I can not explain why, but apparently my subconscious did not see this man as a threat. I calmly gave him most of the money in my cash drawer and set it on the counter. I did my best to maintain eye contact with him during the entire transaction, noting facial features and his hat.
After placing the cash on the counter, he leafed through it and grumbled, “no dye pack”, I responded, “no”. He rounded up the cash and carried it out by hand. No bag or container of any type. As he walked away, I pulled the alarm and called for the teller supervisor. After calling her name the 3rd time, she responded. I let her know that the man at the door had just robbed us. At first she did not believe me (probably because I’m kind of a joker and I was very calm and collected about the situation).
The police took about ten minutes to show up. Since I have been through a few robberies, I know the routine. We blocked off the appropriate areas for the forensic team, shut everything down and locked everyone in the bank. Luckily, we only had one customer at the time, so this particular robbery was not too much of an inconvenience for customers. (Sometimes customers are stuck for more than an hour while the police gather statements).
I must have described the crusty, dirty old man 20 times in all. I had to give the same story to all of my co-workers, corporate security, law enforcement, and market executives. It was exhausting.
Most people that I have talked to have started the conversation wearing kid gloves. I guess that they fear that my psyche is damaged or that I am somehow sensitive to what they may say. They could not be more wrong, and I am not afraid to let them know it. I do not want to be babied and I am not fragile. This incident did not change my world view or make me look at anything differently. This is an everyday risk that I take and I realize that when I walk into work.
Unfortunate, yes. Life changing? No. I would be happy to answer any questions or discuss any specifics of the robbery with anyone. Leave me a comment or email me. Even though this criminal has not been captured as of yet, I am confident that I am safe and that he will, with time, face prosecution.