Banks deal with fallout, security issues
By JOHN K. RYAN firstname.lastname@example.org February 7, 2011 8:56PM
2010 Southland bank robberies
Of the 31 bank robberies in 2010 in the local FBI task force zone, which includes parts of southern Cook, Will and LaSalle counties, 21 were in the Southland:
Jan. 4, Charter One Bank, 12004 S. Pulaski, Alsip
Jan. 22, Charter One Bank, 8811 W. 159th St., Orland Hills
Jan. 27, Palos Bank and Trust,15801 S. Bell, Homer Glen
Feb. 9, Marquette Bank, 10419 S. Cicero Ave., Oak Lawn
Feb. 10, TCF Bank, 9424 S. Pulaski, Oak Lawn
Feb. 10, TCF Bank, 6410 W. 127th St., Palos Heights
March 5, First Midwest Bank, 2 Main St., Park Forest
May 13, TCF Bank, 7901 S. Harlem Ave., Burbank
Aug. 17, US Bank, 18300 S. Kedzie Ave., Homewood
Aug. 18, Palos Bank and Trust, 9400 W. 179th St., Tinley Park
Aug. 18, Sherwin Williams Credit Union, 14701 Myrtle Ave., Harvey
Aug. 23, Standard Bank, 4001 W. 95th St., Oak Lawn
Sept. 7, Suburban Bank and Trust, 3120 W. 159th St., Markham
Sept. 14, TCF Bank, 3153 W. 183rd St., Homewood
Oct. 4, TCF Bank, 17705 S. Halsted St., Homewood
Oct. 7, Chase Bank, 13211 LaGrange Road, Orland Park
Oct. 26, TCF Bank, 783 E. 162nd St., South Holland
Nov. 2, US Bank, 18300 S. Kedzie Ave., Homewood
Nov. 4, Chase Bank, 4141 W. 95th St., Oak Lawn
Nov. 6, TCF Bank, 3220 S. Chicago, South Chicago Heights
Dec. 10, First United Bank, 20 W. 34th St., Steger
Source: FBI Chicago
Updated: September 24, 2012 6:25AM
A heist in December at a Chase Bank branch netted the robber only $50, and the average amount taken in bank robberies only runs in the hundreds of dollars, said Tom Kelly, a spokesman for Chase Bank.
But the harm done to the bank goes beyond the bottom line, he said.
“Most robbers get little money, usually get caught and penalties are severe. It’s not a good line of business,” he said.
But armed robberies, in particular, can devastate those on the scene.
“It can be very traumatic ... robbers cause unnecessary grief for our employees and customers,” Kelly said.
Chase offers counseling for staff and any patrons present when a bank is held up, though not everyone takes advantage of it, Kelly said.
“It depends on how violent or visible it was. Sometimes the robber just slips the teller a note and customers don’t even know it’s happened,” he said.
Other times, customers or employees may go through extended periods of counseling.
Michael Tardi, director of securities for Standard Bank in Hickory Hills, said banks try to stay a step ahead of robbers using security technology. Most banks have surveillance cameras or digital recording systems.
Tardi said the bank conducts risk analyses at its branches to determine the level of protection needed, including whether to use security guards. Tardi said having a security guard doesn’t guarantee a bank won’t be robbed.
“Some banks may not see the expense as worth it because it doesn’t assure things,” he said.
Banks train employees on what to do in case of a robbery. Though neither Kelly nor Tardi would specify what is taught, both indicated the goal is to minimize the risk of staff or customers getting injured.
Even before opening a branch, Standard Bank considers the risk of it being robbed, Tardi said.
“We look at the history of bank robberies in the area, or even the general crime rate,” he said.