Friday, April 4, 2008

Indiana: Clerk Wrestles Gun From Would-Be Robber

Indianapolis, Indiana

From the Indy Channel of April 4, 2008
Clerk Wrestles Gun From Would-Be Robber

A gas station attendant was back on the job Thursday night, days after he wrestled a shotgun away from a would-be robber.

Dramatic surveillance video of the incident at the Shell station at 38th Street and Capitol Avenue was released Thursday, 6News' Cheryl Jackson reported.

Clerk Deme Momar found himself in a fight for his life soon after the would-be robber came into the store.

"The clerk recognized him from coming in and out and being around the neighborhood," said Indianapolis Metro police Detective Leon Benjamin.

The man waited for a customer to leave the store, then convinced Momar that he needed help with the ATM machine.

"His plan was to lure the clerk from behind the secure area where the cash register was located," Benjamin said.

Momar made an exception to store policy and went to help the man, after which he was greeted with a sawed-off shotgun.

"It's not easy if someone pulls out a gun on you and you are between life and death," Momar said. "He ... pulled out a shotgun on me and we fight and I take the gun out of his hand."

The struggle continued for several minutes, until Momar was able to get the gun away from the man.

"I let him go because I didn't know what ... to do. I couldn't shoot him, and he was begging me to let him go," Momar said. "Even if I go back there and give him the money, he will shoot me, too."

When Momar got the gun, the would-be robber's demeanor changed from attack mode to defenseless.

"He thought I was trying to shoot him, so he said to me, 'Please, I'm begging you, don't shoot me. Let me go. Let me go,'" Momar said.

Police and Momar both said they think the man lives in the neighborhood.

"He stay around here, not so far, and he used to drive a green (Ford) Explorer, two-door," Momar said. "That day, he was walking."

Momar said he decided not to let the robbery attempt keep him from returning to work.

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