CITGO Clerk Refuses Assistance to Robbery Victim
GARY, Ind. -- A woman who was robbed at knifepoint while pumping gas into her church's van couldn't believe it when the gas station attendant refused to call police for help. "I ran, of course, to the nearest place," Gary resident Rosetta Heffner said, recounting Sunday's robbery.Her request to call 911 was met with silence from the other side of the Citgo station's counter.
She tried again.
The clerk's response?
"Use your cell phone."
Heffner couldn't believe it.
"I thought it would be a safe haven, anything could have happened, and he told me to use my cell phone," Heffner told the Post-Tribune of Merrillville.
The gas station's manager said he was sorry about the robbery, but clerks at the station do not make emergency calls from the front counter, fearing retaliation for criminals."We have to be careful," he said. "If we call, then there are problems. They can hear. So we use the back phone. We are always helpful to the customer, but we have to protect ourselves."
Members of the Moving Spirit Church, which Heffner attends, regularly use the gas station to refill the church's vehicles. At least they used to. Member Latrell Peterson said the church will take its business elsewhere. "We have eight vans and three buses rolling every day, but we don't go there now," Peterson said.
If you have a blog, please consider telling your visitors about this, along with CITGO's contact information.
An Open Letter: Is This CITGO Corporate Policy?
Your website claims “We’re Your Neighbor.”
Your “Community Involvement” page tells us “At CITGO, we take ‘community’ seriously. Lending a hand to those in need is important to us.”
Yet, according to the Associated Press, when a paying customer asked your Gary, Indiana station clerk to dial “911” after getting robbed at knifepoint, on your property, your clerk refused. Your manager confirmed this is standard practice when asked.
What is CITGO going to do about this?
And why, with all the competition out there, should the public do business with a company that shows such callous and cowardly disregard for the welfare of its customers?
Your reply, or lack of one, will be publicized. How much depends on the swiftness and acceptability of your reaction.
UPDATE 11/28/5I recieved an email:
Thank you for your e-mail.
We are currently investigating this incident. Please understand that CITGO does not own or operate any retail outlets. However, we can (and will) take appropriate measures -- up to and including de-branding the station -- if such action is warranted.
CITGO is committed to operating as a good neighbor where we do business. Please be assured that we do not ignore nor take matters like this lightly.
Thank you for your interest in CITGO Petroleum Corp.
Customer Service Representative
Midwest and Northeast Regions
x4886 or 1-800-423-8434, dial tone x6514
918-524-2114 - Fax
UPDATEAccording to AlanDP in my comments, this is a canned response. Go figure.
Labels: Consumer Advocacy