SUR investigating series of armed robberies



PHILIPSBURG, Sint Maarten (KPSM) — The Special Robbery Unit (SUR) detectives are investigating several armed robberies reported in the past four weeks. These armed robberies, perpetuated against merchants and shopkeepers, were above the average figures.

Due to this increase in July, it is of utmost importance to the Sint Maarten Police KPSM that both the public and business owners are educated to minimize the risk of being a target of crime. The best way to “deal with” with armed robberies is to prevent them.

Owners of small supermarkets/ and other businesses are urged to take precautions to protect themselves by refraining from keeping large amounts of cash in their establishments. Robberies are typically committed due to lack of foresight for emergency situations as well as when cash is poorly being handled. By failing to have proper security measures in place, many businesses unknowingly make the situations easier for robbers.

The police will continue to contribute to the safety and security of the public, but will continue to request the community’s assistance in curbing these types of crimes. Only by working together and continue to be vigilant in our neighborhoods can we stop the individuals who go into the community looking for an easy payout by committing a robbery.

Prevention is always better than finding a cure. To help you do that, the Sint Maarten Force Communication Department has put together some tips that can help your business from becoming a victim of robbery and also how to deal with them in the event a robbery does occur.

Armed robberies usually happen during opening and closing times, as well as lunch breaks. Why? Opening and closing periods are particularly vulnerable times due to low staffing and large amounts of cash on hand. Lunch hours are primary times for the same reasons.
Practice safe cash handling
Robbers are after cash, so take the necessary cash handling precautions to minimize risk and loss. Here are some of the ways to do that:
⦁ Avoid having unnecessary amounts of money in your register. Only keep the amount you need to conduct normal business, and either put everything else in a safe or transfer to the bank.

Improve visibility
Having a checkout area that’s highly visible can discourage robbers. That why it’s best to:
⦁ Avoid fixtures or signs that can obstruct views of and from the register. 
⦁ Cover your blind spots using mirrors or cameras. 
⦁ Invest in good lighting both inside and outside your stores.