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Bank drill catches sheriff's deputies, officers by surprise

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  • Bank drill catches sheriff's deputies, officers by surprise

    Whats everyone's thoughts on these drills?



    Published Saturday | May 19, 2007
    Bank drill catches sheriff's deputies, officers by surprise
    BY LYNN SAFRANEK
    WORLD-HERALD STAFF WRITER



    Douglas County sheriff's deputies caught several masked men Tuesday after rushing to the scene of a west Omaha bank robbery.

    Imagine the deputies' surprise, however, when the alleged robbers identified themselves as off-duty Omaha police officers.

    The officers work in their off-time for a security consulting business and had been contracted by Great Western Bank to stage a mock bank robbery at the branch on 168th Street and West Maple Road, said Omaha Police Sgt. Teresa Negron, a police spokeswoman.

    The drills have been going on for several months, after the bank is closed for the night and with the employees' full knowledge, said Negron and Douglas County Sheriff Tim Dunning.

    The idea is to teach bank tellers and employees how to react during robberies and the best ways to notice robbers' physical characteristics, Dunning said.

    Before the drills began, the off-duty officers placed a sign outside the bank alerting passers-by to the mock robbery.

    "The problem was, it was just too far from the roadway," Dunning said.

    Tuesday, a motorist driving by Great Western saw a man outside the bank putting on a ski mask - and didn't see the sign. The motorist called 911.

    But 911 operators hadn't been notified of the drill. They dispatched sheriff's deputies to the bank around 8 p.m.

    The deputies arrived and nabbed the robbers.

    "We had them on the ground spread-eagle," Dunning said.

    When the situation calmed down, the three men explained who they were and what was happening, Dunning said. Later, Deputy Police Chief Mark Sundermeier called Dunning to apologize.

    In 2003, a Gas 'N Shop convenience store staged a fake robbery at its location in Schuyler, Neb., to see how employees would react. Two men armed with unloaded weapons ordered the men and women to hand over wallets and purses.

    Although some employees at the convenience store knew about the drill before it occurred, many did not and later claimed that it caused them to suffer panic attacks and anxiety.
    Some people were just dropped on their heads as children more than the rest of us!

  • #2
    Are they crazy? Isn't anyone thinking about the liability involved in that?
    "First of all, then we have to say the American public overwhelmingly voted for socialism when they elected President Obama." - Al Sharpton, March 21, 2010

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    • #3
      I remember when they did this at Schuyler they didn't even tell the clerk till after. She quit her job and filed a suit over PTS.
      Some people were just dropped on their heads as children more than the rest of us!

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      • #4
        Eesh. I can't believe they didn't inform the local agencies and the 911 center. Someone wasn't thinking there...
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        NSP Class 52

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