Banks remain on alert after rash of armed robberies

American Savings Bank, Liliha

Armed robbers aren’t just targeting fast food restaurants and convenience stores. Several banks were also hit.

In May alone, three banks were robbed by armed men and police believe all three were connected.

The first occurred on May 1 at the Wahiawa branch of Central Pacific Bank. The other two occurred at American Savings Bank branches, one in Salt Lake, the other in Pearlridge.

Today, American Savings Bank still has special duty police and deputy sheriffs on hand to provide security as well as private guards on the premises.

While guards and cameras are the two best tools to prevent crime, Sam Slom, a state senator and the president of Small Business Hawaii, says anything more would be too much.

“You don’t want bulletproof glass and what, you’re going to have the workers wear bulletproof vests? That’s not Hawaii,” Slom said, “but we have to nip this in the bud. We have to take this seriously.”

In a statement released Friday, American Savings Bank says it is taking the rash of robberies seriously enough to continue the hiring of the extra security in addition to regularly examining its security procedures.

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