I was at front one (my register) when Anna comes running up and says, "Call Kirk, we're getting robbed!"
I was astounded and said, "What!?"
She said, "We're getting robbed - with a gun and everything back at pharmacy!"
I said, "Fuc% Kirk, I'm calling the police!"
I picked up the phone to call 911 and I had a momentary lapse. I kept wanting to hit the intercom button. I told myself to calm down and to remember to dial 9 to get out which means I have to dial 9911. In the meantime I am distracted by the man in front of me and I tell him to leave because we are getting robbed. He tells me his wife is in the back and I tell him again to get out of the store; we are getting robbed! Then I look up to see a woman with a toddler. I point and Anna runs to them and tells them to get out! They don't listen either. In their defense it is rather hard to process the sentences " We are getting robbed! Get out!" You kinda go into shock when you hear it.
I dial 9911 and it seems to ring forever. Just when the operator says, "911, what is your emergency," the two robbers round the corner coming from the pharmacy and the second one has a basket of pills (oxycontin) and a gun waving around. I think, "oh fuc%, they're going to kill you," as my mouth opens and I just stand there gasping for words. I couldn't answer the operator because then they would know I was calling in their robbery! The operator just keeps repeating herself over and over. I did the only thing I could think to do. I ducked behind the counter - hoping that they wouldn't turn around and shoot me on their way out the door. Thankfully they didn't.
As soon as they are outside I start to tell the operator we are being robbed and our location. I start to give a description of the robbers and the operator asks me, "with a gun?"
"Yes," I yelled, "with a gun!" After I give her a brief description I tell her to hold on I need to go to the door and see what kind of car they are getting in. I run outside and I see customers looking in the direction of the bank. "Of course that's where they're at," I think because that is where the shoplifters always park. I guess they all think we won't be able to figure out where they are. I look at their car and I run back in and I give the operator a description of it including the fact that is is covered with coal dust, black mud and no tags.
She asks what direction they went in and just then a customer runs in and tells me the direction! So I pass along the information. About 10 minutes later we get word that they have been caught. Apparently a couple of our customers got in their car and followed them and got on the phone to 911. They were caught within a mile of the store!
Unfortunately I ended up on oxygen in the office (due to my heart condition). I came home early and I am trying to calm myself down so I don't end up in the hospital tonight. I believe I'm succeeding. I think maybe it might be time to quit working. I have had to deal with 2 groups of nasty shoplifters in the past couple of weeks and now a robbery. We will see.
Here's what happened after the robbery. I had to go to the doctor a week later and get on antianxiety meds. I took them for about 3 months. I was still so scared a week later that I was shaking and crying all the time...not to mention what it was doing to my heart.
It turned out the robbers were actually a ring of 3...2 men and a woman. (I believe the woman and one of the men were mother and son) They had been robbing different banks and pharmacies in different combinations (2 men or woman and different man) to throw the police off their trail.
When they left the pharmacy one of our customers saw them leaving and followed them while calling 911. When they ditched their car a mile away the police knew exactly where they were (downtown Charleston). Because of this man they were caught. They are all in prison now and the soonest any of them will get out is 2020.
Moral of the story: Don't rob our Fruth. We have a 100% success rate at catching our robbers. Of Course that is the only time we were ever robbed...Thank God.