What to do if you're in robbery situation

Posted at 2:17 PM, May 25, 2016
and last updated 2016-05-25 23:26:54-04

Larry Mathews, one of the Tehachapi residents who helped take down a bank robber on Tuesday retraced his steps today. Showing 23ABC where he entered and exited the bank then walking around the building to show where he and three other people helped tackle the man who had just robbed the bank. 

Mathews, is retired but was a correctional officer for 20 years. He said once the robber left the bank, his instincts kicked in and he took off after him. 

While Mathews said he would do it all again to protect his town and his bank, he admits many people should not do what he did. 

"If you don't have any kind of training like that, don't do it. It's crazy," said Mathews. 

And while the Tehachapi Chief of Police said he applauds the citizens for stopping the robber, he said the department doesn't recommend others take the same approach. 

"We encourage people to be good witnesses and obtain information that they can provide to law enforcement which will enable us to apprehend the suspects later on," said Chief Kent Kroeger.

Chief Kroeger said witnesses should comply with the robber as much as possible and pay attention to details. 

Witnesses should look at what the suspect is wearing from head to toe, noting color of clothing from hat to shoes as well as any distinctive marks like scars tattoos or facial hair. 

Chief Kroeger also said looking for general description like age, height, weight and race is also important and once the person(s) leaves pay attention to which direction they went and whether they left on foot or in a vehicle. 

If they're in a vehicle, again pay attention to make, model and color. 

"Again, no criticism to those citizens that were involved in this, we really appreciate their efforts and what they did and they were successfully able to apprehend a bank robber," said Chief Kroeger. 

As for Mathews, he said he's going to continue on with his life and he doesn't feel like he's a hero, but he said this is something he's now added -- and checked off -- of his bucket list.