Tuesday, 2 December 2008

It Pays to Be Vigilent as Pizza Blogger Defies Robbery Attempt

I repost this story to highlight what a dangerous job delivering pizzas for a living is, and unless you are 100% vigilent it is all too easy to become just another crime statistic. Kevin is a blogging buddy of ours and this article highlights how lucy he was recently to eascape becoming a robbery victim.

Give Pizza Hut delivery driver Kevin Landis credit. He’s no easy target.

When he got a delivery order for the 800 block of Longson Avenue at 12:30 a.m. Sunday morning, he remembered a story in The Chronicle-Telegram about a robbery and carjacking involving another pizza driver on the same block.

As it turns out, it was the very same address.

Landis called police. When officers arrived, a man waiting on the steps of the home where the delivery was supposed to occur took off running.

Elyria police Lt. Andy Eichenlaub said Landis should be commended.

“He recognized a potentially dangerous situation in his line of work and contacted police,” Eichenlaub said. “He didn’t try to handle it himself.”

Landis, 40 and the father of seven children, ages 2 to 15, said he’s glad he keeps current on the news.

“I would have been robbed, too,” he said.

In the earlier incident, a 51-year-old Amherst man delivering pizzas for Dominos was robbed on Oct. 26 by a man who held a knife to his throat.

His assailant took $30, the food and drove off in the delivery man’s car, a white Volvo 740 GLE station wagon with a Dominos sign on the roof.

On both occasions, the “customer” ordered two pizzas and two subs.

When Landis got the order Sunday, he called the phone number the customer had given. No one at that number ordered pizza.

While waiting for police to respond, Landis and his manager, Nick Rodak, drove to Longson, a quiet street just west of Abbe Road between Cornell and Stanford avenues.

While driving around the block, Landis and Rodak saw two people dressed in dark clothing waiting in a vacant field. By the time police arrived, a man was sitting on the front steps of the dark home — just like in the incident on Oct. 26.

The fact the man ran off shows he probably was up to no good, according to Rodak.

“That guy would have robbed anybody I sent,” Rodak said. “If he (Landis) hadn’t read the paper he would have lost his money, lost his food, lost his car, and he could have gotten hurt.”

Landis, a computer programmer, is just glad he made it home to his wife, Victoria, and their kids.

He has been delivering pizzas as a side job for about 4½ years now to raise money for allowances, school lunches and the like. He even blogs on the topic at http://pizzadeliverystories.blogspot.com.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, one of the top 10 dangerous jobs is being a driver/sales worker. Nearly a quarter of the deaths are due to robberies and assaults, according to the bureau.

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