Big Apple Is Easy Target for Bank Robbers

444 robberies last year due to poor security, says commish
By Katherine Thompson,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 5, 2009 3:23 PM CDT
Big Apple Is Easy Target for Bank Robbers
A Bank of America branch office is shown Sunday, Jan. 25, 2009, in New York. One reason for the spike in robberies, says Ray Kelly, is that banks are putting comfort above security.   (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)

Crime in New York's five boroughs was down again last year, but Police Commissioner Ray Kelly isn't happy. That's because bank robberies have gone up by 57% in that same time, which amounts to daily heists in downtown Manhattan. Kelly blames the trend on banks' reluctance to enact security measures that interfere with their decorating schemes, NPR reports.

Kelly has chastised banks that don't use measures like bullet-proof "bandit barriers" above the counters; detractors of the barriers counter that just because a bank eschews the glass "does not mean it's not using a full list of security procedures." Still, the bank with 4% of Manhattan's branches but 15% of its robberies is one that lacks barriers.
(More bank robbery stories.)

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