Robberies in the Workplace

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According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ (BLS) Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries for 2007, assaults and violent acts claimed 864 lives in 2007and represented over 15% of the total 5,657 workplace fatalities in the United States.

Homicides represented the majority of these violent acts in the United States, claiming 628 lives in 2007, or 11% of fatalities. Over 26% of those homicides, a total of 167, occurred the retail trades, 39 occurred at convenience stores, 32 occurred at gasoline stations, and seven occurred at liquor stores.

While homicides have shown a marked overall decline since 1994 when they peaked at 1,080, they were the third leading cause of work-related deaths in 2007, and remain a serious risk for late-night retail workers.

Tips for reducing work place violence:

  • Maintain good visibility into and outside of the business. Avoid using window posters.
  • Keep a minimum amount of cash in the registers and use drop safes at the register.
  • Post minimum cash stickers on doors
  • Maintain good interior and exterior lighting
  • Control access into and within the business
  • Position well maintained, recorded, surveillance cameras for facial views
  • Avoid staffing only one employee especially during the night shifts
  • Advise employees to report ANY suspicious activity to the police ASAP
  • Quality employee background checks can reduce work place violence
  • Provide de-escalation training techniques to employees
  • Comply completely with a robber’s demands; focus on being a good witness
  • Contact the police department for a security consult 


If you own a business, especially a high-risk business as identified above, and would like an investigator to work with you on a security consultation, please call the Arvada Police Department’s Investigations Bureau at 720-898-6700.

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