Police sources say one man may be responsible for more than two dozen robberies in two months. The man who wore a black hoodie while committing the crimes hit stores between May and June.
On June 30, he struck twice. First, robbing an ABC Store in Waikiki, then, the Longs Drugs in Manoa. He told the clerk there to look at him because police weren't going to catch him. He has not robbed since. And police have few leads.
But there have been many others keeping officers busy mostly targeting businesses in Waipahu and Pearl City.
And the two bank robbers who terrorized American Savings Bank employees in May also have not been caught. The surveillance pictures showed the men using long guns as they went from teller to teller taking cash. Police chased a car shortly after the third bank robbery and arrested three men at Fort Shafter for unrelated crimes but forensic tests showed they were not connected to the robberies after all.
All the crimes have businesses hiring extra security. Lee Donohue, former Honolulu Police Chief and security expert says banks are using off-duty HPD officers and Sheriffs Deputies.
"I'm happy to see police department officers in the shopping centers," Donohue says of the cops who park and write reports in visible areas while on patrol.
"You'll never know what the officer or that blue light has deterred," says Donohue.
He also says business owners need to help protect employees. He suggests lock boxes which are like safes, clerks put money into them but can't access the money. That limits the amount that can be stolen and thieves may not think the robbery is worth it.
Donohue also says it's important to have good, working surveillance systems.