Sunday, September 14, 2008

Florida: Man defends family, kills suspect during liquor store robbery attempt

Palm Beach, Florida

From the Palm Beach Post of September 14, 2008
Man defends family, kills suspect during liquor store robbery attempt

A man defended his family and father-in-law's liquor store Sunday night, shooting and killing a would-be armed robber, said sheriff's officials and family members.

Yamen Fattah stopped an armed man with a fatal shot shortly after 9 Sunday as he was confronted at the counter. He, his wife, Rema Fattah, and their 5-month-old child were behind the counter, brother-in-law Maher Masri said later Sunday night. He drove from Plantation after his brother-in-law's call saying, "I shot a guy."

The family was at A1A Discount Beverage just south of 10th Avenue North, on Military Trail in suburban Lake Worth, when a man with an semi-automatic pistol entered the store, said Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office spokesmen.

"It appears to me the clerk was as much in fear not only for himself, but for his family and child," Lt. Nick Vassalotti said.

The robber was pointing the gun at his wife and baby and swinging it around at all of them, when Fattah fired, Masri said. He had asked the robber to please leave them alone, he said.

The man's body could be seen lying inside the doorway, glass from the door shattered around him, as detectives interviewed the witnesses. The open sign blinked in red and blue neon.

"He defended himself and he defended his family," Masri said.

Masri said the store had been robbed before.

"We believe the employees of the store got the upper hand on him," Sgt. Rick McAfee said.

Both men had semi-automatic pistols, McAfee said. An autopsy was scheduled for Monday, he said. Although the case will be turned over to the State Attorney's Office, no charges are expected, McAfee said.

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