SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – Springfield Police Chief Paul Williams mostly reported improvements Monday night to council members when it came to a decrease in crimes.

However, the department is currently focusing on efforts to prevent armed robberies. That crime is something officials said is increasing in the city.

In a trending crime update, officers advised people and business owners on what they should watch out for.

“Do not chase the robber,” said an officer with the Springfield Police Department. “After the robbery, secure the doors so the robber cannot re-enter the business. Don’t let anyone in other than emergency personnel. Call the police immediately.”

A business here in Springfield, Euphoria Smoke and Vape, was robbed back in November.

“They pointed the gun at the cashier,” said Owner Ahmad Nawaz. “Of course, they grabbed as much stuff as they can. They made him open the cash register. They took some cash, they took some products and they left.”

After the armed robbery, Nawaz said the business has remained closed.

He said he’s having a hard time with employees not wanting to return to work.

“We closed this business, and we’re moving out from over here,” said Nawaz.

He said they potentially hope to open back up in Springfield at a different location.

Chief Williams said data shows a 13 percent overall increase in robberies comparing numbers in 2021 to 2022.

“The number of crimes isn’t important,” said Williams. “It’s the severity of the crimes here.”

The department is trying to use a software to help cut back on robberies.

The program helps to give officers an idea of areas that are more prone to have a robbery occur. For more tips on how to prevent a robbery, click here.