How to help police in an armed robbery attack

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - Several armed robberies have taken place across Jonesboro recently, with victims held at gun point. But what if you were put in that situation? How would you react? In a high stress situation, being able to really pay attention to detail is nearly impossible. But officers with the Jonesboro Police Department say even little things can make all the difference in an investigation.

"We've had a rash of robberies, armed robberies in the last three to four months," said Coleman, including four in the past month. Lieutenant Roy Coleman with JPD says as of now, the cases remain open. "We have two suspects that have been seen on these robberies, and we really don't have a lot of information as far a description goes," said Coleman.

Coleman says when he sits down to interview a victim, the biggest challenge is narrowing the field when it comes to developing a person of interest. "What we recommend is that the victim be the best victim that they can be because they're there and we're not. They may seeing things that could help us in an investigation later," said Coleman.

He says it's what you can remember with your eyes that makes the difference. "Tattoos on the arms, tattoos on the hands, on the face, scars. Did it appear to be a female voice, raspy. Anything that can easily to be distinguished between another subject," said Coleman. And even being able to describe the suspect's demeanor can be helpful. "The way they would walk, with a stagger or maybe they had an injured leg," said Coleman.

With a hand full of armed robberies recently across Jonesboro, he says it's important for people to be aware of their surroundings. "When you pull up to get out of your car to go in the house or into a store, take just a minute to look around and see if you've drawn anyone's attention," said Coleman.

But if you're ever faced with that type of situation, of course giving up your wallet is a no brainer. Coleman also says don't try and take on the person with the gun.  "By no means should you jeopardize your safety or anyone else with you for personal belongings," said Coleman.

He says what they look for from witnesses is any personal descriptors that can help them out.  Coleman adds, many times officers will come back and talk with the victims a few days later to see if there is anything they might of remembered after having time to calm down and reflect.

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