Responding to a robbery or armed robbery

What to do if you've been a victim of a robbery and how to make a report.

Key crime prevention tips

In the event of a robbery or armed robbery:

  • remain calm
  • activate an alarm, if safe to do so
  • do exactly what the offender says, do not give them any items they did not ask for
  • tell the offender before you move, so they aren’t surprised
  • where possible, keep your distance from the offender
  • speak only when spoken to
  • avoid eye contact
  • make sure the offender can see your hands.

What to do if you have been a victim of an armed robbery

If you've been the victim of an armed robbery:

  • Do not follow or try to apprehend the offender. Your safety is the most important thing.
  • Close the store. Do not let anyone in except emergency personnel.
  • Call Triple Zero (000).
  • Provide first aid to any injured person and, if required, request an ambulance.
  • Do not touch anything. Isolate areas where the offender(s) stood, touched, spat, or bled.

How to assist the police

While you wait for police to arrive, write down everything you remember.

Details about the offender

Details about the offender include:

  • hair colour
  • height
  • weight
  • clothing, hats or facial coverings
  • accent
  • tattoos
  • piercings
  • scars
  • whether they were right- or left-handed.

If you can see their car, record the:

  • make
  • model
  • colour 
  • registration number
  • which direction they left in.

Details about the offence

Details about the offence include:

  • when did the offender enter the store and when did they leave
  • did the offender use or threaten to use weapons
  • where did the offender go in the store, what did they touch
  • what did the offender take from the store.

If you need more help

You local police station can connect you to counselling and support services.

Victims of Crime Assistance Tribunal

You may be eligible for financial help through the Victims of Crime Assistance Tribunal (VOCAT).

Help can be for counselling, medical expenses, and loss of earnings.

VOCAT does not provide compensation for lost or damaged property.

To apply, visit the Victims of Crime Assistance Tribunal website.


Download a printable checklist:

Responding to a robbery or armed robbery checklist - print only version
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