We want to correct a story that we first told you last night about a Domino’s pizza delivery employee who was robbed in Grand Rapids this week. We initially reported that the delivery driver was asked to pay $20 back to the company after being robbed. Ronnie Asmar, Operations Director with STA Management (a Domino’s franchisee), tells us that company policy states that delivery drivers must pay money back to the company if they are robbed while carrying more than $20 during deliveries. He says drivers are instructed for their own safety to return cash to the store after each delivery when they are in possession of more than $20. Although he confirms that this employee was carrying more than $20 at the time of the robbery, he says that this particular driver was not forced to pay money back. Although Asmar confirmed this company policy in an interview, he says they actually never ask drivers to pay money back after being robbed. While reporting this story, we inadvertently interpreted that company policy was enforced in each case, but later learned that that did not happen with the October 29th robbery in Grand Rapids. We cleared this up with STA Management and apologize for the miscommunication in our reporting.
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — A pizza delivery driver robbed at gunpoint twice in just a few weeks is now being forced to pay back the stolen money to his employer.
The driver was robbed just two days ago, but Domino’s says he violated company policy when he was robbed a month ago and had to pay them $20.
Just after 8 p.m. Saturday, Grand Rapids Police responded to calls of an armed robbery after a Domino’s delivery driver was robbed at gunpoint.
“The driver reported that he had made a delivery at a particular address and as he returned back to his car he was approached by the suspect who demanded money,” said Sgt. Terry Dixon from Grand Rapids Police. “The suspect showed him a handgun and then fled with an undetermined amount of money.”
FOX 17 is told this is the second time in a month that this particular driver, who is not being named at this time, has been robbed at gun point. The first time, he was hit across the face with a gun and required stitches. In that instance, the driver actually had to pay Domino’s back for getting robbed.
“At the end of every delivery when drivers come back into a store they are required before they leave again to deposit the money that they took from the previous customer into their locker,” said Ronnie Asmar, Operations Director with STA Management who works with Domino’s corporate office.
Asmar tells FOX 17 the reason drivers are required to deposit money back at the store after each delivery is so they don’t have more than $20 on them at one time, protecting both the company and the employee.
“They should never leave the store with more than $20 on them, usually $15,” said Asmar.
Asmar says over the weekend that driver had made an extra delivery before he was able to go back to the store, so the suspect ended up getting away with about $50. While this latest instance wasn’t against company policy, Asmar says, when he was robbed a month ago that driver failed to put all of his money in his locker before going out on another delivery, meaning he had to pay back Domino’s $20.
“If it was a situation where he did not do his drop, for example, if he went back to the store and left with more than $20 on him at the time, he would be asked to pay for it because it is his responsibility based on the way we hire them,” said Asmar. “It’s their responsibility to make sure they do a drop every time.”
When asked about drivers carrying personal protection while they’re out on the job, Domino’s said it’s forbidden, citing customer safety.
“We don’t want our customers feeling threatened by any weapon of sorts that our drivers could have on them,” said Asmar. “If an altercation may occur it would put the company in a position of looking poor.”
This is not the first time pizza delivery drivers have been targeted in West Michigan. Last month, three different employees were robbed in Wyoming. With no arrests in any of the cases, Grand Rapids Police plan on reaching out to other units to work together.
“As of right now our investigators are looking at what we have, all of the evidence and photographs and everything,” said Dixon. “I do expect that our investigators will probably reach out to Wyoming Police to see if we can collaborate on this case.”
Halloween is a very busy night for pizza deliveries, so Dixon recommends drivers stay vigilant and aware of their surroundings.
Asmar recommends customers turn their porch lights on to make drivers feel safer. Drivers are also required to conduct security calls before delivering to homes that they haven’t delivered to before or customers that order online.
If drivers fear for their safety, Domino’s says they should not deliver to that home and contact their managers for help.