HOUSTON, TX – You’ve seen them ’em at banks and grocery stores, armored truck drivers who drop off and pick up cash. Unfortunately, so have the crooks. This year in Houston, there have been 10 attempted robberies of these highly guarded vehicles; four, in just the last two months.
“To give you some perspective,” says Robert Hatchett, GardaWorld Sr. Manager for Texas Operations, “in the United States, according to the FBI, there’s (on average) two to three armed car events per year.”
Last year in Houston alone, there were three. What’s causing crooks to think they can pull these heists off this year? Maybe it’s too much Grand Theft Auto 5, a video game released in September where one of the missions is to hold up an armored truck.
Whatever the reason, GardaWorld wants criminals to know they aren’t puttin up with it anymore! After all, they’re the biggest money movers in North America, processing $5 billion dollars a day in cash.
And if you’re thinking about trying to roll one of their trucks, listen up. “Anyone who attempts to attack an armored car, can be assured,” Hatchett promises, “our folks are trained to respond to a threat.” Translation: the dudes will shoot you, as they did last month at a Chase bank holdup in Spring. Plus, Hatchett adds, “We are going to prosecute to the fullest extent of the law.”
Martha Rodriguez is now a Garda regional employee relations manager, but she drove an armored truck in the Houston area for six years. She says the public should really keep their distance from the drivers, “Just having them approach you when you’re not expecting it puts you on heightened alert. Our guards are trained, and they will take action to defend themselves and the valuables entrusted to them.”
And if you see someone messing with a truck, don’t be hero. Hatchett suggests you, “move away from the scene… get safe and secure quickly (and) call 911.” He shares one last piece of relevant info, for potential truck heisters: “Most armored car incidents don’t result in the bad guys getting anything but shot and prosecuted.”
So stick to Grand Theft Auto if you want to hold up an armored truck. Chances are that’s the only way you’re going to score.