Let Anti-Gun Convenience Store Chain President Put His Money Where His Mouth Is

I'll see your hatchet and I'll raise you a handgun. For that, the clerk was fired? (Screenshot from surveillance video released by Clackamas County Sheriff's Office)

U.S.A. – -(Ammoland.com)- “A would-be robber of a convenience store brought a hatchet as a weapon. He ran when the clerk pulled out a gun,” CBS affiliate KOIN 6, Portland, reported Friday. “The president of Plaid Pantry told KOIN 6 News the stores have a zero tolerance for weapons and the clerk is no longer employed there. He said employees are trained to de-escalate robbery situations to avoid injury.”

Really?  And that’s not the only question that deserves answers.

First of all, just saying “the president” insulates him from personal feedback for his obnoxious arrogance. Who the hell is this guy?

Per the Wikipedia entry for the 108-location privately owned convenience store chain, the President and CEO is Jonathan Polonsky. With such a policy in place, we can assume he speaks for Executive Chairman William C.”Chris” Girard Jr. and CFO Brent Chadwick. Those reaping the highest rewards demand low-level employees to be helpless and alone in the face of on-the-job danger. They do so from the relative safety of corporate offices, so they deserve to own the resulting personal reputations for putting the bottom line above the lives of human beings working for them.

We know the industry has been forced to install security cameras, but as we see in this case, that didn’t deter the hatchet-man from attempting an armed robbery. He was counting on the clerk being “trained” to give attackers what they want. But what if what they want is your life?

Shall we review some recent headlines from the past few days?

We could keep going with this but the point is made. The stores were lit, surveillance cameras were deployed and the clerks were presumably just as “trained” as Plaid Pantry’s front line fodder. Yet despite it all, the attackers weren’t “de-escalated.”

What worked at Plaid Pantry was an armed clerk. And note, as with most defensive gun uses, the situation was peaceably resolved without firing a shot. Thanks to an armed citizen, as is so often the case, violence was deterred. The attack was de-escalated.

And that leads to some further questions:

What does “give ‘em what they want” training consist of? How extensive is it?  How many hours of instruction do employees receive? What are the credentialed qualifications of those teaching it?  Have any of the instructors or course designers ever personally “de-escalated” an armed assailant? Have Polonsky and his fellow captains of convenience? What evidence exists to demonstrate the effectiveness of such training as being the main factor in “de-escalating” sociopaths?

That’s what they are, you know.  Who else would be so twisted they would threaten the life of another person over the contents of a cash drawer? And that’s the most important point: It’s not the cash being threatened, it’s the life. The money merely represents the value put on that.

Still, if Jonathan Polonsky, Chris Girard, and Brett Chadwick are so confident their way is the best way, they’d go a long way toward convincing others they believe their own BS if they would contractually obligate themselves to the employees they expect to put their lives at risk.  Will they acknowledge a legally-binding special relationship with those they require to be disarmed, assume responsibility for their personal safety and protection, and admit and accept liability should they fail in that duty? For real money commensurate with the loss?

Or is this simply a matter of it being ultimately cheaper if everybody takes their chances and not wanting to assume the risk of a DGU gone wrong? The answer to that acknowledged risk is real firearms training, by the way.  But then, that costs money, and we’re only talking clerks here, right?

Plaid Pantry is taking a well-deserved thumping over at its Facebook page right now, but don’t expect real change to come about. We’re talking Portland here, where the populace elected an anti-gun mayor who allows Antifa to run wild on the streets. That customer base doesn't care. And even if we’re not confining ourselves to such areas, you don’t see enough of an economic fuss made by gun owners to effect change at national companies like 7-Eleven or Circle K.

About all we can expect in this case is what gun owners are used to by now—control our own decisions. That, for me, means placing conviction over convenience and having zero tolerance for retailers that insist otherwise. Still, it would be nice to find out more about the fired clerk,  let him know not everyone disapproves of his actions, and maybe help the guy find another and a better job.


About David Codrea:David Codrea

David Codrea is the winner of multiple journalist awards for investigating/defending the RKBA and a long-time gun owner rights advocate who defiantly challenges the folly of citizen disarmament. He blogs at “The War on Guns: Notes from the Resistance,” is a regularly featured contributor to Firearms News, and posts on Twitter: @dcodrea and Facebook.

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    greg
    Guest
    greg

    should be an easy case to solve, the guy left fingerprints on the hatchet and door on his way out. the ceo and upper management probably have security at their corporate offices and live in patrolled gated communities. but allow an employee the ability for them to protect themselves, not a chance.

    John Schofield
    Guest
    John Schofield

    Trouble now days is simple. An employee’s live is CHEAPER than facing some ambulance chaser who sees either a dead or wounded “angel” (his Mama’s definition) and sees you (the business owner) as the deepest pockets in the picture. They would rather see their employee die than face the “justice” system. It’s a sad statement but totally true.

    JR
    Guest
    JR

    Amen! Well said.

    Pete
    Guest
    Pete

    Part of the problem is insurance companies. They’d rather settle than defend.

    BigMikeU
    Guest
    BigMikeU

    well at least your lucky enough to live in a state that will allow you to carry even if your boss says you cant.If you ask our Communist Governor if he has in fringed on our 1st,2nd and 6th as well as others and he will say no.But hes a liar and has and is in the middle of raising prices so high to purchase a hangun and a firearm at all that only the rich,Law Enforcement and the Military will be able to get them.They will tell you they even allow its Citizens to CC but dont believe that… Read more »

    Scotty Gunn
    Guest
    Scotty Gunn

    Where i work, there is a zero tolerance rule for any weapons. Yet, I go through bad parts of the city for work.
    As my wife says, you can always get another job but you can’t get another life. Guess my decision.

    Danny
    Guest
    Danny

    Your wife is spot-on.

    tomcat
    Guest
    tomcat

    You can say all you want about the CEO of this convenience store having a policy against guns. However, you have to take into consideration the scale of people that work these jobs are not necessarily the highest educated or the highest IQ. Shoot em up first and ask questions later. Secondly, this is the CEO’s game and if you don’t like the rules go someplace else. There is no sense in getting all hot and bothered over something like this. The clerk in this example did exactly what I would do, he used his sense to stop the robbery… Read more »

    Heed the Call-up
    Guest
    Heed the Call-up

    Tomcat, so you “shot down” (pun intended) your own straw man argument against allowing citizens to be armed at work, both by your admittance that you would do the same as the clerk and by the example you stated of this clerk.

    Lewis
    Guest
    Lewis

    I worked convenience stores for 13 yrs. The owners and mgmt are afraid a robber will be injured and then bring a lawsuit against the owners. A dead store clerk cannot sue.

    Tionico
    Guest
    Tionico

    no, but a store clerk who has been shot and either injured or killed becomes a liability to the employer for their workplace injury or death, and Labor and Industries/Workman’s Compensation will hit the compnay hard. Their premiums for disability will rise. And of there are many such injuries company wide, the entire company’s rats will rise even faster. If I were a close relative or business partner of someone who was shot on hte job in a Certified Defenseless Victim Zone I would be looking into filing a lawsuit for failing to do their duty to maintain a safe… Read more »

    Brian L Taylor
    Guest
    Brian L Taylor

    The behavior of the CEO shows the rats have already risen.

    John Dow
    Guest
    John Dow

    I’d like to see the CEOs and other higher ups of companies with this sort of policy regularly work an overnight shift or two every month. When their robbery happens, would they change their tunes?

    Rick
    Guest
    Rick

    Maybe this ex-employee will come to realize what a blessing this is. Now he knows that not only will his employer throw him under bus for protecting their assets from being stolen, but the president of Plain Pantry has publicly stated any robbery attempt will go unopposed. Every junkie and loser will be having a field day.

    Danko
    Guest
    Danko

    I think the guy that got fired should sue the chain for violating his second amendment right.
    Regardless of their company rules your right’s are protected.

    Wild Bill
    Guest
    Wild Bill

    @Danko, Unfortunately, the Second Amendment does not protect us from employer actions. So it would not be much of a case.

    roger
    Guest
    roger

    I bet that if the employee had simply handed over the till money he would have been fired for that !

    2WarAbnVet
    Guest
    2WarAbnVet

    “…de-escalate robbery situations”? What kind of nonsense is that?

    El Halcon
    Guest
    El Halcon

    That is what the gun did, but he is too stupid to understand

    Mark Are
    Guest
    Mark Are

    Years ago when I was traveling through Harrison Arkansas there was a convenience store called “Hit and Git”. I joked to my wife about it being named that because of all the robberies that took place there. Maybe the guys who own the chain in question should rename the whole chain Hit and Git and that way someone wanting a job will know exactly what they are in for. I’d rather be fired for having a gun then dead following the rules. I was an unarmed store detective and ended up getting fired when I started carrying after a mass… Read more »

    Danny
    Guest
    Danny

    In the ’80s there was several armed robberies in Boone county around Harrison,Ar until the Sheriff’s Deputies shot & killed a robber. That stopped that B.S. in that area right quick!

    Dr Timothy-Allen Albertson
    Guest
    Dr Timothy-Allen Albertson

    Now, now its not PC, and its racist, to stop Criminals of Color. We must insure Black Criminal Privilege/

    Larry Brickey
    Guest
    Larry Brickey

    These places are called “stop and robs” for a reason. Needs to be a strike but the clerks can ill afford it.

    PMinFl
    Guest
    PMinFl

    A few years ago a friend of mine was working the late shift at a 7-11 in Fl. That store was robbed or actually an attempt to rob it at 3:00 am. My friend jumped the thief and was able to alert the PD. He was injured in the fight, dislocated shoulder, and had to take a week off to recuperate. Upon his return he was FIRED and not paid for his last two weeks.
    Oh thank heaven for ………..shit.

    Danny
    Guest
    Danny

    Your friend should have gone back and robbed that store.

    james
    Guest
    james

    Dude, take what you want, I QUIT.

    Charles Moore
    Guest
    Charles Moore

    In this current environment, that may still get you killed over contempt for your weakness and/or the “no witnesses” doctrine. Being compliant DOES NOT enhance your safety.

    Heed the Call-up
    Guest
    Heed the Call-up

    james, there are numerous videos of robberies where the thief came into the store and shot the clerk first, then opened the till. This clerk was lucky. My only negative comment about the way the clerk handled the situation is that he didn’t point the firearm directly at the robber, he only showed that he was armed. Everything else was great. I bet that thief urinated on himself before or as he ran away.

    Country Boy
    Guest
    Country Boy

    now actually not a bad idea. When the robber comes in, hand the robber the keys to the safe, and store, and tell him to lock up when he leaves…. and then the employee should walk out the door………

    james
    Guest
    james

    I say the clerk deescalated this armed robbery attempt just fine. No shots fired.
    Jobs are easy to get these days if you are not six feet under.

    Proctor
    Guest
    Proctor

    I am surprised that guy could run with that much in-toeing!

    G
    Guest
    G

    What?????

    MB
    Guest
    MB

    Why have clerks at all, leave the store unattended, the honor system, and watch how long it takes for the store to go out of business. Then everyone loses, the company, the CEO, the employees, the vendors, the community, and even the criminals…leave video cameras running so we can all watch…

    Wild Bill
    Guest
    Wild Bill

    @MB, maybe all his employees should get a t-shirt that says You do not need to threaten my life to steal this stuff. Just steal it!

    Charles Moore
    Guest
    Charles Moore

    “We don’t have money here for you to steal, because everything’s FREE!” I like it. The socialist business model.

    Henry
    Guest
    Henry

    “Give them what they want?”

    “Here’s the cash drawer. Here’s the keys to the front door. Here’s the keys to the liquor locker. Here’s the keys to the delivery vehicle. I’ll be leaving now, everything in the store is yours.”

    If I actually owned a franchised store, I wouldn’t do that. But if the store stocks were all part of the corporate inventory of Mr. Jonathan Polonsky, I’d do it in a New York Minute.

    joefoam
    Guest
    joefoam

    Yes indeed, the employees are expendable. No wonder they have trouble getting new hires. God forbid that they become embroiled in a lawsuit.

    Lewis
    Guest
    Lewis

    I worked convenience stores for 13 yrs. The owners and mgmt are afraid a robber will be injured and then bring a lawsuit against the owners. A dead store clerk cannot sue.

    Darrell
    Guest
    Darrell

    The next Clerk Robbed and injured or killed has a good court case. With the evidence that this company does not care about it’s employees. Everyone knows gun free zones are targets. Now it is known that these stores are good targets for criminals who have no rules.

    William Fender
    Guest
    William Fender

    Anybody who thinks this person did something wrong is a danger to the rest of society.

    jc
    Guest
    jc

    Exactly and maybe the store owner should experience a life changing criminal act so that he would change his view on protection

    Old Vet
    Guest
    Old Vet

    Just red flag him.

    Terry
    Guest
    Terry

    I would be willing to help fund a “go me fund” if someone would start it.

    The fund could be to help families sue, that have lost a loved ones working for Panty, that were denied to carry, that can prove they would have carried except for the companies policy.

    freewill
    Guest
    freewill

    I think in this case the Owners should be liable if they refuse to let their employees protect them selves, But hey! if I was the employee, I guess its ok to shoplift, The owners dont care if their merchandise is stolen, I’l just kind of mention that I think our inventory is a little short, I’m just here to run the cash register for honest people!

    Stripeseven
    Guest
    Stripeseven

    Bars are sometimes shutdown for continued violence at their establishments. Shut these places down too. Don’t patronize them.

    JPM
    Guest
    JPM

    One of the biggest problems in this country today is the attitude of, “Just give them what they want”. Comply, comply, comply, you will be assimilated. Millions of Americans go along to get along and have neither spine nor balls. The convenience store example here is just one of many problems this attitude results in here in America. I had a medical lab make a mistake and bill Medicare instead of my insurance, but instead of fixing the problem themselves, which would have been easy, they sent me a bunch of forms and “required” me to fill them out, come… Read more »

    jc
    Guest
    jc

    Perfectly said and I agree 100% what is wrong is all the rainbow fairy’s out there in the world we don’t raise our youth to have any balls instead they want a sex change. How long can we hold off the left before they get one in office then we will get to fight the fairy’ s .

    Get Out
    Guest
    Get Out

    It would be interesting to see what or how employees are trained to de-escalate robbery situations to avoid injury looks like? Kudos to the clerk, it appears he de-escalated the robbery situation in a spectacular fashion.

    Webfoot Logger
    Guest
    Webfoot Logger

    Many years ago I stopped a robbery at a Plaid Pantry by standing behind the would-be robber with my hand inside my jacket . . . he was well aware (few people are) that the clerk and I had him in a fork, and he left to rob another store on the other side of town, according to the police.

    Concerned citizen
    Guest
    Concerned citizen

    So Jonathan pplomsky doesn’t believe in defending yourself. I’ll bet this millionaire has armed security guards to protect himself. Perhaps he’d prefer that the robber had chopped the employee to pieces! Would he be happy them? Oh, just cry and wave a hankie and the bad robber will leave you alone! Yeah, right, as he’s high on drugs and laughing while he chops you up. Employers like this don’t give a damn about their employees, they figure they are a dime a dozen and they can fire them for any reason and hire someone else. ! I hope this employee… Read more »

    Rock
    Guest
    Rock

    More clerks like that would reduce the nonstop convenient store clerk murders. The criminals just kill the clerks to reduce the witness pool, whether they give up the money or not. An unarmed clerk WILL become a statistic, just a matter of time.

    rich z
    Guest
    rich z

    In N.Y. the 7/11 seems to be the target lately ,at least on Long Island. Three were hit before a suspect was nailed an a fourth was hit as the suspect in the first three was being brought in.That’s NY gun laws at work. Just try to get a carry permit.

    Concerned patriot
    Guest
    Concerned patriot

    The mayor of NYC and governor of New York are power crazed madmen who want to enslave the people who live there. “You No longer have any choices, we know it all and will make all the choices and decisions for you, you must obey us, we are your masters and rulers!!!”

    Rock
    Guest
    Rock

    Maybe the owner (his immediate family members), the CEO or any “above expendable clerk”, upper non gun deciding asshole running the company should have to spend 1 day and 1 night shift and the lowest rated, most robbed store of their chain PER MONTH… See how THEY feel about being a take a bullet target for any thug that wants to rob or kill a clerk. Yeah, put THEIR smug ass behind the counter or USELESS “bulletproof” shield… The owners. etc. don’t give a rats ass for their subhuman employees, no one will miss them. There IS a reason they… Read more »

    Baldwin
    Guest
    Baldwin

    I like the way you think.

    Patriot
    Guest
    Patriot

    Where does polomsky live? In some gated community? With security? Maybe people should find out where he lives and hold protest with signs and bullhorns!!

    Dr. Strangelove
    Guest
    Dr. Strangelove

    Certainly looks like the clerk de-escalated the situation to me. I’m guessing that someone who appreciates his calm demeanor in a life-threatening position will give him a better job.

    Heed the Call-up
    Guest
    Heed the Call-up

    Dr. Strrangelove, yes, he did a great job at de-escalating the robbery. I hope he does get a better job, with an employer that values his life as well as his work ethic. He can list multi-tasking on his resume, disarming and holding a thief at gunpoint while dialing 9-1-1 on his cell phone.

    Sean C
    Guest
    Sean C

    Should have held him at gun point until he could hand over all the money in register?

    n r ringlee
    Guest
    n r ringlee

    Kalifornia is a prime example of how “deescalation” fails to work. In the blue utopia thugs know with a high level of certainty that clerks in stop and robs are unarmed. They know they will get the cash, get on I-15 and make the dash to Vegas and blend in. Often they simply execute the submissive clerk for fun before making the dash. Happened twice in Apple Valley CA when I lived there. Crooks and thugs travel with impunity in the blue utopia.

    Chiefton
    Guest
    Chiefton

    Now that the top administrators of these gas stations have publicly announced that they keep their staff unarmed with instructions to just give the money to armed robbers, how high will the increase of robberies at these stores go up while endangering their remaining employees? Nothing like announcing these “gun free” zones that were already high value targets for violent criminals. What is their liability now based on this announcement?

    Don Watson
    Guest
    Don Watson

    That is a first rate question! The legal eagles are going to be testing the waters now.

    Henry
    Guest
    Henry

    Past experience? From a 2000 article: The life-lesson began with the armed holdup of a Domino’s delivery man in the adjacent Fort Belvoir neighborhood. This was in the late 1970s, when our family lived outside Washington DC and I was still a dues-paying member of Handgun Control, Inc. Unfortunately for the stickup artists, the pizza man had a licensed handgun. Without even firing, he put the robbers to flight, later to be apprehended. It made the nightly news. Proving that no good turn goes unpunished, the driver was promptly fired for daring to defend his own life and (incidentally) his… Read more »

    Randy Koster
    Guest
    Randy Koster

    I had a friend in middle school whose mom was killed for $4.35 in the till. She was not armed. These businesses need to wake up to reality.

    RLD
    Guest
    RLD

    They prefer thier clerks to be sheeple as it fits thier anti gun agenda . Thier policies encourage thieves to rob them with thier give them what they want position . Its like training a dog with treats or rewards for good behavior . They train thieves with rewards for criminal acts. They Punish the employee for defending his life . Something is wrong with this Liberal way of thinking . Rewards for criminal behavior and punish the good guy who wants to protect himself from criminals.

    Alan
    Guest
    Alan

    Give ’em what they want. If they want to rob the store they want a case of high speed lead poisoning and the clerks should be trained to give it to them.

    Bob
    Guest
    Bob

    Whatever happened to employers providing a safe work environment? Obviously, Plaid Pantry (what a name) cares more for it’s “bottom line” than it’s employees. Convenience stores have always been a magnet for thugs, thieves, druggies, and robbers. As a retired Police Officer, I have seen many convenience stores robbed at gunpoint, some stores more than once. I would not want my teenager or anyone I know to work in a place like that. This fired employee should sue Plaid Pantry for openly “allowing” criminals to “safely shop” in their stores, and placing a higher value of life on the thugs… Read more »

    Will Flatt
    Guest
    Will Flatt

    There are no ‘Plaid Pantry’ locations in my area. If they ever put on in north central Indiana, I’ll be sure to BOYCOTT THEM FOREVER.

    BunnyRabbit
    Guest
    BunnyRabbit

    I would be willing to bet that when Plaid Pantry makes large deposits, they use an armed guard. I’d be further willing to bet that their corporate offices have security.

    So, money is worth protecting and executives are worth protecting, but hourly workers have no value and are expendable.

    Looks like a boycott is in order.

    grifhunter
    Guest
    grifhunter

    Excellent point

    Rusty Chains
    Guest
    Rusty Chains

    I haven’t been inside a Circle K in years, and it has been decades since 7/11 saw a dime of my money. There is a reason those places are called “Stop-N-Robs” and it isn’t because the clerk is named Robert!

    m.
    Guest
    m.

    plaid pantry pukes, FU