By Lori Fullbright, The News On 6
TULSA, OK – Robberies are on the rise in Tulsa. The city of Tulsa has had around 400 so far this year, which is 80 more than this time last year.
The good news is, arrests are also up. Tulsa Police arrested 25 robbery suspects in the first 18 days of May.
Police say 25 robbery arrests means a lot of suspected bad buys going to jail, which is a big deal.
The suspects range from Curtis Cornelius, charged with robbing the IBC bank, to Cody Moore, accused of robbing a 12-year-old of his backpack, to Everett Alexander, accused of breaking into a house, beating up a woman and trying to cash her stolen checks.
The others are accused of robbing restaurants, Family Dollar stores, pizza and bread delivery people, people walking down the street and even a woman at a stop light.
Some of them have been violent where the victims were hurt, even killed.
"It's a shame we're having so many robberies occur but they are not going un-noticed, not going un-arrested and when the prosecutors get them, they won't be un-punished," said Sergeant Dave Walker, Tulsa Police Department. "I think we're winning that battle."
Sergeant Walker believes robberies are up because many young people are committing the gateway crimes like larcenies and burglaries, but, are going straight to picking up a gun and robbing people.
The risk is much greater than the reward. Many of them get very little money, sometimes, none at all, but, they can get 15, 20, 30 years in prison.
"I don't think it's monetary," Sergeant Walker said. "It's just bad people doing bad things and as long as that happens, we have a job."
Sergeant Walker believes the arrests are up because despite recent turmoil on the department, officers are the streets are responding and reacting quickly to robbery calls, which allows them to catch more of them, right after the crime occurs.
"It ought to stand as a warning," he said. "It doesn't matter what day and age we're in, cops still like catching robbers."
If you are a victim of a robbery, the best advice is give them what they want. Property isn't worth being hurt or killed for. And keep your wits about you enough to memorize what they look like so you can give police an accurate description.