Investigating the psychological impact of bank robbery: A cohort study

Maj Hansen*, Cherie Armour, Mark Shevlin, Ask Elklit

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Despite numerous annual bank robberies worldwide, research in the psychological sequelae of bank robberies is sparse and characterized by several limitations. To overcome these limitations we investigated the psychological impact of bank robbery in a cohort study by comparing general levels of traumatization and somatization in employees never exposed to robbery and employees exposed to robbery at different degrees and time-points, while controlling for selected risk factors of posttraumatic distress. Multivariate regression analyses showed that only the acute directly exposed robbery group which had a significantly higher score on general traumatization and somatization compared to the control group whilst controlling for other factors. In conclusion, bank robbery exposure appears to be especially associated with psychological distress in the acute phase and in victims present during the robbery. After the acute phase, other factors appear more important in predicting general traumatization and somatization in bank employees compared to exposure to robbery.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)454-459
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Anxiety Disorders
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 01 Jan 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Bank robbery
  • Cohort study
  • Control group
  • Somatization
  • Traumatization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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