St. Louis police hold final meeting for pizza delivery driver safety

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by Laura Hettiger / News 4

KMOV.com

Posted on December 14, 2012 at 7:46 PM

ST. LOUIS (KMOV) – St. Louis police on Friday held their final meeting with different delivery workers to discuss the dangers of the job and what can be done to protect the drivers.

In November, undercover County police started posing as pizza delivery drivers after an Imo’s worker was murdered on the job. They warned would-be criminals that if they order a pizza, it could be delivered by a police officer. Since their increased patrols, there have not been any other pizza delivery incidents in St. Louis County.

The same cannot be said for the City of St. Louis. Over the last two weeks, three drivers from three different companies have been attacked, robbed and even put in the hospital. On Saturday, Dec. 1 and Thursday, Dec. 6, two drivers delivered pizzas to 7114 Virginia Avenue in south city. Both of those drivers were met with bricks to their faces.

The day after the second attack, City police vowed to make the job of a pizza delivery driver safer.

Unfortunately, that night, an Imo’s driver was again attacked on Virginia. The suspects in that robbery put a knife to his neck and said they would kill him.

Although every pizza company News 4 talked to praised the police department, city cops organized a trio of pizza delivery safety meetings for this week. The last one was held at 4:30 p.m. at North Patrol.

However, one general manager said city police could be doing even more to protect his workers.

“I really believe if everyone works together on this and the drivers pay attention to what’s going on around them, I believe a lot of this can be avoided,” said Imo’s General Manager Norm Hendrix.

Hendrix wishes the city would do what the county did a month ago: Have undercover officers pose as delivery drivers.

“If they want to ride along with us, or if they want to do deliveries, I would have no problem with that,” said Hendrix. “I believe the question has already been asked, but we are just waiting to see where we go from there.”

At last check, city police said it no plans to use undercover officers as delivery drivers. But even the pizza managers admit city officers have a lot of crime to fight and might not have the man power to do delivery stings.

The county says the practice continues to work there. In fact, since they started the initiative, there have not been any attacks on county drivers.

 

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