Below are some bank robbery stats from 2011 that seem super weird to me -- why would there be so few guards in banks versus other security measures? I'm sure there's selection bias in that thieves would tend to plan more robberies in institutions under less guard, but still... is this ratio somewhat typical? Wouldn't it make more sense to increase the numbers of security personnel at banks more broadly instead of solutions that don't seem to deter theft (and apparently aren't terribly effective at apprehending the suspects, either -- see the dollar totals in charts 3 and 4 below for a look at how little the police are able to recoup; security cameras are easily thwarted by disguise).


Security Devices Maintained by Victim Institutions

Alarm System

4,967

Surveillance Cameras

5,028

Bait Money

3,086

Guards

236

Tear Gas/Dye Packs

1,239

Electronic Tracking

558

Bullet-Resistant Enclosures

768

Security Devices Used During Crimes

Alarm System Activated

4,557

Surveillance Cameras Activated

4,926

Bait Money Taken

1,605

Guards on Duty

197

Tear Gas/Dye Packs Taken

478

Electronic Tracking Activated

299


Grand Total—All Violations: 5,086 (recorded robberies)

Loot Taken and Recovered

Loot was taken in 4,534 (89 percent) of the 5,086 incidents. Loot taken is itemized as follows:

Cash

$38,331,491.85

Securities—Face Value

$100.00

Checks (Including Traveler’s Checks)

$2,310.11

Food Stamps

$0.00

Other Property

$9,600.00

Total

$38,343,501.96

Full or partial recovery of loot taken was reported by law enforcement agencies in 973 (20 percent) of the 4,534 violations in which loot was taken. Loot recovered is itemized as follows:

Cash

$8,051,992.97

Securities—Face Value

$20.00

Checks (Including Traveler’s Checks)

$0.00

Food Stamps

$0.00

Other Property

$18,874.00

Total

$8,070,886.97