Let me tell you a little Story about the day we got Robbed.
It was a Late Saturday Afternoon. The Jewelry Store was Pretty Busy. All the Salespeople were Waiting on Customers. Other People were Browsing, a couple of People were at the Front Counter Waiting for Repairs, Batteries or Payments.
I’m helping a couple at the Engagement Ring Case. She’s holding her New Born Son and they’re looking at Bridal Rings.
Everything was Normal
You could hear Light Chatter and Laughter and People were Enjoying themselves…
Until we got Robbed!
Out of the Blue, 4 People enter the Store Quickly. They are Wearing Dark Clothes and Black Ski Masks Pulled over their Faces.
3 of them are Carrying Bats. The 4th is carrying a Sledgehammer.
I glanced at them as they Entered, as I always Keep an Alert Eye on my Surroundings and People on the Floor.
I see them enter and my Heart Skips. I stopped talking instantly and within Seconds I see the Sledgehammer Sailing through the Air. One of the Robbers Shouts “Everybody DOWN!” and he Waves his Bat Wildly. Everybody Dives.
And just then, the Sledgehammer makes Contact with the Wedding Band Case (just 2 Cases down from me and the New Born Baby).
It was Startling and Scared the Crap outta us. A Loud Boom Shattered the Glass Top and Sent Pieces Flying Everywhere.
We Dove for Protection
Screams were Heard at the other end of the Store. Everybody got down on the Carpet. I glanced around and my Eyes Landed on the Office Manager Crouched by her Desk at the Back. She gives me a Quick Nod letting me know she Tripped the Silent Alarm.
The Sledgehammer Rose again in the Air and Smashed Loudly on the Case. More People Cry out.
2 of the Guys with Bats were Deep in the Store keeping the People down. One was Stationed at the Entrance Keeping an Eye out. The 4th Robber was trying to Rip a Hole in the Case so they could Snatch the Jewelry out.
The Case wouldn’t Open!
The Problem was, they weren’t doing a Very Good Job. Even though the Glass was Broke and Spider Webbed, it stayed Intact. It was Protective No-Break Glass and kept the Glass from Exploding on Impact (Like a Windshield).
After a couple more Solid Whacks of the Sledgehammer, the Robber began Digging into the Jagged Hole with his Hands, Ripping it apart. The Hole was only about 2″ Big and he was Desperately Stuffing his Hand in the Gap.
The Phone began to Ring (probably from the Silent Alarm). It caused more Panic in the Commotion. I could hear lots of Movement in the Hallway. People were Yelling for Help and calling “Security Security“. Someone Screamed. Footsteps were Running.
It Was Sheer Chaos!
“HURRY” Yelled one of the Robbers. The Frantic Robber was Digging and finally Nabbed some Rings from the Hole…
And that’s all the time they had!
One of our Salespeople (Duncan) was coming back from Lunch. He comes Walking around the Corner of the Cafeteria and I heard him Yell “HEY!”
“GO GO GO!” one of the Robbers Shouted and they Bolted out the Door.
Duncan was Fresh out of the Military and one Hell of a Salesperson and one Hell of a Runner. He sees the Robbers Scrambling down the Hall and what does he do?
He Drops his Drink and Runs after them.
He didn’t even Hesitate. He didn’t know if they had Guns or not. He didn’t know if they were Dangerous, if they had Stolen anything, nothing. He just saw the Black Ski Masks and went for it.
What a Courageous Fool!
He Chases them down the Hall and out into the Parking Lot where a Car was Eagerly Waiting for them.
The Security Guards Zip by the Store on their Walky-Talkies Shouting to the Outside Patrol…
Duncan Dives forward at the Last Second, Grabs the Jacket of the Slowest Robber getting in the Car and Drags him out. The Car Squeals away and takes off as the Robber is Dragged to the Pavement, almost Running him over.
3 of the Robbers Escape, plus the Driver. Mall Security Handcuffs the Guy and the Cops Arrested him shortly after.
What a Crazy Day
The 3 Rings they Stole were only Worth about $300 (We Filed a Police Report). They just happened to Pick the Stupidest Case there is to Rob. The Plain Gold Wedding Band Case.
But it was just about the only Case that didn’t have Customers in front of it when they entered.
The Robber that got caught was only 17. So more than likely, he’ll just get a Slap on the Wrist and I Bet he’ll be out to Rob some more. He never did Rat on his Friends though.
I’m very thankful that no one got hurt. With a New Born Baby, it could have gotten really Bad. I was Positive that those Bats were Meant to Harm, but they were probably all Kids and were just using them as Intimidation.
All the customers talked to the Police and left. They Bought Nothing! Too Shook Up. I can’t Blame them.
It’s a Good Thing those Cases were Durable and Secure. I didn’t think they could have Withstand a Sledgehammer Blow, but they held up pretty well.
The Glass was Replaced later that Day. All the Fragments Vacuumed up. And by 8 o’clock that Night you’d never know we were Robbed…
Except for the little Shake in my Hand.
It certainly does Unnerve you!
That day was 16 years ago and I’m happy to say I have never been Robbed like that since. Not with Weapons!
Usually it’s just a Quick Snatch-N-Grab. One time we did have someone Reach over the Counter while their Kids caused a Distraction and Steal an Entire Tray of Gemstone Rings.
One other time we actually had someone pick up an Entire Counter Display of Charms and Bolt out the Door (Read Here!). But that’s about it.
I will say that after 23 years of working in the Jewelry Industry, I’ve been Pretty Lucky. I’m Crossing my Fingers though. Times are Tough and People are Pretty Desperate right now.
You never know who the Next Person Walking in the Door will be.
But then again, this could happen to Anyone, Anytime, Anywhere. It’s just a Big Question Mark in our lives.
Will you Bring the Sledgehammer Down?
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