Money and Guns – It Happened At Work

When I was about 18, I worked at the bank. And I loved it. Being a bank teller was a lot of fun for me. I liked handling all the money, I liked working with customers, and I liked the money from my paycheck. So much so that I decided to not go to college full time so I that I could work full time. Cuz bringing home $8.50 an hour was major cha-ching, obviously.

So, basically there was a room in the corner of the bank and it was closed off to everybody except the customers that were business owners. In order for a customer come in, that stood at a door that had to be opened by us (we just pushed a button to open it). It was a very busy branch, and because I was new and didn’t know anybody, the other tellers would open the door. And that is how I know I didn’t let the bank robber in that day.

We had these big rolling cabinets that we kept our money in. There were two drawers on top, where we kept about $3,000 to cash checks, etc. The bottom of the cabinet had two doors that opened up and had roll out drawers. That is where we kept the big money, and money bags that customers brought in for deposit.

I had been there about a month or so. It was the day before Thanksgiving, and it was swamped. There were a lot of customers in the room waiting to be helped. I had just over $2,000 in the top drawers, and over $150,000 in the bottom. I usually kept those doors on bottom open it was just easier to get in and out of that way. For some reason, I was finishing up with one customer, I closed the doors on bottom.

A man walked up with a savings withdrawal slip and his ID. He pushed them towards me across the counter with one hand; the other hand was in his pocket. As I looked at the slip, I realized what was happening. It said “This is a robbery. I have a gun in my pocket. Do not give me marked bills”. He then handed me a bag. As I took the bag, I also tried to keep his ID. He said “No, give it back to me. You’re a smart one, huh?”. I opened the top two drawers where I kept my small money. I put the two grand in the bag. He said “I want more…you better give me more”. I told him I had just emptied my “big” money into the vault 5 minutes ago. He was not happy. But thank God he didn’t ask me to open the bottom doors or he would’ve seen that I lied to him. He then told me “Do NOT push the alarm when I leave”. I told him I wouldn’t, but the second he turned around to leave, I pushed the silent alarm, which automatically notifies the police and starts several surveillance cameras.

They never caught the guy. I know he had a gun in his pocket because the customer behind him watched the whole thing happen, and could see the gun. Whether it was real or not he couldn’t tell.

And that is something that happened to me at work.

Mama's Losin' ItThis post was written for Mama Kat’s Writer’s Workshop for Prompt #2: It happened at work


  1. Holy crap!!!!

    Did you freak out???? Did you quit??? I want to know more!
  2. Sippy Cup Mom says:
    OMG, that is so scary! When I was a manager at Target I had to go through robbery training and I was terrified at the thought of something happening!
  3. Mama Hen says:
    Oh my goodness! I would have been so frightened! What a story!

    Mama Hen
  4. that's f-n crazy!! I fought fires for 10 years and your story really freaked me out. You are a brave lady!!
  5. Pumpkin and Piglet says:
    That must have been so scary! Well done for keeping so calm. Thank God he didn't make you open the bottom.
  6. ♥Cari♥ says:
    Great job keeping calm! I was a bank teller for many years and that was always such a huge fear of mine.
  7. Dysfunctional Mom says:
    Holy crap! You are so brave. I think I'd have been a quivering mess.
  8. Maureen says:
    You're so calm! WOW! I would've freaked out. Glad you closed the bottom drawer! Phew!
  9. MandyE (Twin Trials and Triumphs) says:
    Wow! That's a crazy story! My first thought (for some strange reason) was, all I've got to contribute is - while working in a bakery during high school - I dropped a dish towel in a huge ~20-gallon vat of icing. HA!

    Oh, but then I remembered the crazy guy escaping from the mental institution and holding the elementary school hostage when I was working in an after-school program during college.

    I'm going to quit thinking on this one, and hope I never have a better story to compare to yours! :)
  10. Kimberly says:
    I have worked in a bank now for 16 years and I can totally relate to your story! I have been out of the branch for well over 10 years but I've had my fair share of bomb threats and robberies. Sounds like you did exactly what you're supposed to do and stayed incredibly calm while it happened! Amazing.
  11. I would have totally freaked out! Way to keep your cool girl!
  12. Courtney says:
    HOLY @$%*&!
  13. Katie's Dailies says:
    That's an incredible story! I would've been gulping screams down my *gullet*! (wink,wink!)

    Seriously, how did you remain so calm? I would've been shaking like a leaf!
  14. The Sharp's says:
    Um, hello, that is extremely scary and you act like it is no big deal. Did you not totally freak out? Way to handle the situation! I would have been a shaking, freaking out mess.
    I also worked at a bank as a teller in the summers since my senior year in high school until I graduated college. Thank goodness I never even had a close call like that! The closest thing was one of the other tellers stealing money from their drawer.
  15. Um...are you serious?!?! That is just about the best work story I've ever heard! You are beyond brave! I'd be peeing my pants and bawling:)

    Thanks so much for your comments on Monday about my guilt. Ugh. I'm still so thankful for you!
  16. blueviolet says:
    Oh my gosh, I can't believe how calmly you seemed to handle that. I would have been stuttering and flushing red and passing out! You rock!
  17. Bethany @ Organic Enchilada says:
    Holy crap! I can't even imagine how scary that must have been. I'm sitting here in shock just reading about it! Glad it didn't get any uglier than that! How did he not get caught? Maybe if he'd gotten away with more $, the cops would have tried harder? Wow. Just wow.
  18. the mombshell says:
    first ghosts and now this!? you lead one hell of a life!
  19. What a scary experience you had. Holy cow!! That would have freaked the crap right out of me. You sound like yuo were pretty calm and collected though.
  20. Belle's Butterfly says:
    I have worked for a bank for the past 5 years. It's sad how often banks actually get robbed. I am not a teller and honestly don't think I could ever do that job. I give you props for doing it. Glad everything worked out the way it did. It really sucks they didn't catch the guy.
  21. Single and Sane says:
    I saw you had a link to a Writer's Workshop post on Lady Bloggers and had to come check it out. I didn't expect such a suspenseful work story! I can't believe you were so calm!

  22. And that is how I know I didn't let the bank robber in.

    I love that line. So glad it wasn't worse!
  23. You are a Rock Star, I was the world's worst bank teller. Thank God I never had a robbery because not only would I have given him all my money, I probably would have taken off with him given my attraction to bad boys.
  24. HOLY CRAP! How terrifying. I would have fell to the ground and played dead. Or been shaking too bad to move and get him his money.
  25. Crazyness. I bank from home, lol.
  26. Allyson & Jere says:
    Yeah.....that's just CRAZY talk! How utterly terrifying. So glad you came out of THAT ok. And, on the other that you're past it. It makes for QUITE the story to tell at parties. i mean really, how many people can say, I was totally bank robbed, at gunpoint! Well, YOU CAN!
  27. Organic Motherhood with Cool Whip says:
    I would have totally crapped myself if that happened to me. You are amazing to have made it through that like you did and only letting him get away with $2000. I bet the bank was grateful that you were so calm and smart about the whole thing.
  28. MommaKiss says:
    I'm pretty sure I'd need to change my underwear after that. Twice.
  29. Um, to end that with "and that's something that happened to me at work" made me laugh! Well, that sure is a BIG something that happened! HA, HA! Wow, really good thinking on your part! And i have no clue why robbers say not to push an alarm! Don't most banks have silent alarms these days?
  30. litanyofbritt says:
  31. forty-something chick says:
    Oh.My.Gosh!! What a story, and I also loved ending such a dramatic story with "And that's what happened to me at work". Wow.

    I am sitting here thinking that this one, single experience in your young life has probably made some of your most crazy, insane mommy days seem like a cake walk!?
  32. Kristin @ Peace, Love and Muesli says:
    Great title!! Hooked me right in. Scary. Now tonight I'll be too scared of bank robbers to get up and pee. Sheesh.
  33. That is terrifying! Did anyone else see this happening?! Wow! You stayed remarkably cool under pressure!
  34. Ms. Understood says:
    Oh wow. . . . I would have been shaking. Way to keep your composure. He's a real dummy actually handing over his ID. Too bad you didn't get a good look at it.
  35. Totally scary! You kept your cool though! Makes me glad I never worked in a bank.
  36. NanaDiana says:
    THAT ALONE qualifies you to be the Mommy of a monster and twins. If you can calmly handle that situation you have proved that you can do anything. That is why God has blessed you with your TRIO of TROUBLE- Hugs to you~ Nana
    ps...if you get a chance I re-published my original FOOD FOR THOUGHT on my blog today - it is all about Octopus on the Rocks-lol
  37. Heligirl says:
    YIKES! It sure sounds like you kept your head about you though! Great work in that department. I'd have peed myself for sure.
  38. Holy cow! How did you not pee yourself?
  39. TornadoTwos says:
    WOW! Unbelievable, what a scarry experience that had to of been.

    Thanks for visiting my blog today and leaving a comment!
  40. Adrienne says:
    Scary! I was always afraid to get the bank teller jobs for this very reason. So glad no one got hurt! :)
  41. Karen Mortensen says:
    Wow, holy cow. What an experience.
  42. Aging Mommy says:
    Wow! What an experience - so was that the end of your banking career?
  43. Holy Cow! How scary. I am impressed with how well you handled that. I have no idea what I would have done. You have some guts in trying to keep his license and lying about the "big" money. I'm glad it worked out so that no one got hurt, although it sucks he got away!
  44. That is totally crazy! You handeled it well, I think I would have just cried, I hate guns!
  45. roxanesdays says:
    Wait...WHAT?!?!?!?! Are you friggin serious with all that?!?! Somebody up there said that you're a rockstar, and I second that notion!

    That dude would've had gullet juice all over him if it were me instead of you. No wonder you had all those kids! You obviously work well under pressure.

    I can't believe it. You have to tell us more one of these days. Word up?
  46. Holy crap! That's scary!
  47. pegbur7 says:
    I would still be cleaning out my pants!
  48. OMG . . . OMG . . . wow.
  49. Sluiter Nation says:
    holy crap! you told that story so matter-of-fact! Amazing story!
  50. Cori Benson says:
    OMG that's crazy!! I'd be scared out of my mind! Thats the exact reason I could never work in a bank! My anxiety would get the better of me!!
  51. Mama Penguin says:
    Um, so yeah, I would have freaked, and I mean FREAKED out!!! Wowsers you were calm!! ehh, I am so scared of Robbers that I don't go to bed at night unless I check windows/doors etc. Scary stuff!! Glad everything turned out okay!
  52. Lula Lola says:
    Now, that's a "something" to have happen at work! Thank goodness he didn't get violent. I bet you went weak in the knees when it was all over. You sound like the very best "go to" girl in an emergency!
    My cousin worked in a grocery store when she was in college. She and the manager had just closed and were leaving when someone came from behind the Coke machine and forced them back inside with a gun. He duct taped their hands and legs and made them lie on the floor. He yelled and screamed like a mad man while he robbed them. After he left, they waited forever before inching their way to a phone. Then had to knock it off and the manager dialed 911 with his chin or nose or something.
    She was in Atlanta at the time and moved home the next day. Scared her to death.


  1. [...] YEARS SINCE THIS HAPPENED?!) I worked for a local bank. While working the day before Thanksgiving, I was robbed. The man said he had a gun – I didn’t try to find out if he did or not. But the point [...]