While one of the robbers moved the customers and bartender into the hallway and held them at gunpoint, the other herded Peterson into the manager’s office and demanded that he open the safe. Peterson fumbled with the dial, his hands shaking.
The man pointing the gun at him said, “Hurry up or I will use my gun; we haven’t much time.”
Peterson might have wondered what the hurry was. After a few more seconds of twisting the dial he did it right and the door to the safe swung open.
The hold-up man ordered Peterson to take out the two money drawers and take them to the front of the Natatorium where everyone else was lined up under guard. Thug number two had relieved them all of their cash. The robbers ordered everyone to face the wall and stay there for ten minutes.
On their way out of the building the armed men encountered two customers coming through the door. They ordered them to get quickly inside and up against the wall. One, Si Kent, apparently did not comply fast enough. One of the thugs hit him on the head with the butt of his gun, stunning him.
The gunmen then ran to catch the trolley, which had just made its regular stop near the Nat, thus explaining the particular hurry they were in. The men ordered motorman Herbert Shaw at the point of a pistol to move it along and quickly. At Second Street they had him stop the trolley. They jumped off and headed north on foot.
Within the hour bloodhounds from the nearby penitentiary were called into service to find the hoodlums. It was to no avail.
Speculation was that the men knew the safe would have more money than usual, Friday being payday for many. They got away with more than $500 in cash, the equivalent of about $13,000 in today’s dollars.
A couple of days after the robbery, The Idaho Statesman speculated that motorman Shaw must “have broken all records, not only for the trip to Second Street, where the men alighted, but the entire distance to the power house. It was probable if ever he feared for his trolley to leave the wire it was during his enforced run that night.”
The robbery was said to be “undoubtedly one of the boldest holdups in the history of Boise.” Bold it was, and successful. The robbers were never caught.