Circle K clerk disarms robber -- and gets fired
Story here. Aggravating it is that one of the robbers was urging the gunman to shoot him. Apparently company policy is that clerks are expendable.
Guess which store chain is going to have an uptick in robberies?
Posted by: TinCan Assassin at December 30, 2011 04:21 PM
At least in the case of public companies, don't workers comp laws effectively compel employers to treat employees as expendable in these cases? An employee killed during a robbery brings a statutory death benefit which is insured, and protection for the employer from any further civil liability. An employee who resists brings at least the risk civil lawsuits against the company from the perpetrator or his survivors. Don't directors have a legal duty to minimize financial risks to their companies?
Posted by: wrangler5 at December 30, 2011 09:32 PM
He might have kept his job if he had just taken the gun after the conspirator called for his execution. But apparently after getting the gun, he chased the robbers out in the parking lot. Given that he was outnumbered, that may have been an unwise decision to put his own safety and the corporation's assets at risk in violation of company policy. I'm not sure I can fault them for firing him. On the other hand, if he had the gun, maybe he should have shot the one that called for his death. That one may have been too much of a threat to public safety to let go.
I think the corporate theory is that if crooks know the stores are pushovers, there is less likelihood of injuries for all clerks, whereas if crooks expect resistance, it is more likely the robberies will start with a head shot or a hostage taking of a customer at the corporation's liability. They figure it is best to just let the police and video tapes be the crook's only source of fear. I tend to think it is generally better for citizens to take on the civic duty to apprehend criminals when the cops aren't around, but I can't say that is always the right choice.
Clerks deposit cash into a time locked safe throughout their shift, so that there is never more than $100 cash in the register. The losses would be greater than the cash take if there is even a broken window, damaged merchandise, or a bullet hole in a cooler.
Posted by: Critic at December 31, 2011 01:44 AM
Critic: You make a potentially good point about the chase, but we weren't there nor can we review the CCTV footage. As Nathan Bedford Forrest put it, in a situation like this you may need to "keep up the scare"; if you've routed them, defeated them in their minds, you may need to continue that.
Although in the context of war the other maxim ends with "... but wars are won in the rout" i.e. this is when you can cheaply kill or capture your opposition, the former something we can't do (it's not our job to decide if a criminal's death is necessary for public safety and in most jurisdictions that would be murder) and the latter is not exactly our job or necessarily wise.
As for the corporation's call, if they are doing it because of the chase they aren't making that clear and one wonders how wise this is overall given the bad PR it's going to bring.
Posted by: Anonymous at December 31, 2011 12:57 PM
Most of the Circle K's in my area sell Venezuelan gas, so I've been avoiding them anyway.
Posted by: teapartydoc at January 1, 2012 08:23 AM
A few thoughts come to mind. First off did Circle K ever train this employee how to deal with a situation where one robber is telling the other robber the shot him, the employee. If not, than the employee has not done any thing wrong. Reactions of not wanting to die kick in which is human nature, are going to take over in most all people. So Circle K needs to deal with the real world and offer some kind of training for employee's on what to do and when to know that things have gone too far during an armed robbery.
I'm not a lawyer however, I see this matter as a class action lawsuit against Circle K. My reasoning is, there's no question of the stress this firing has put on other employees. In this time of high unemployment, many employees must be going through some hard times in fearful thoughts that they must become victims of violence, even death or lose their job.
Come on, its over the top when some violent felon has a gun on an employee and the other violent felon is calling for the execution and that store employee. Whom is not allowed by company policy to do anything put because a victim. Sue this company out of business and set an example to any company that demands their employees become victims of very serious violent crimes and must not defend themselves.
Posted by: AvgJoe at January 1, 2012 09:49 AM