A robbery was thwarted at a north-end convenience store this weekend after a youth, armed with a rock and a plastic knife, was tackled by a quick-thinking customer.
Just after 3 a.m. on Saturday, the 16-year-old would-be robber entered a store on 114 Avenue and Groat Road, demanding cash and cigarettes.
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Within seconds, a male patron of the store threw the suspect to the ground and held him until police arrived.
No injuries were reported in the incident, but Edmonton police warn the outcome could have been much different.
“Overall as a police service, we don’t encourage people to get involved like that,” said police spokeswoman Karen Carlson. “Thankfully it worked out that nobody was injured, but certainly there could have been the flipside where a number of people were injured.”
Carlson said that the best thing storeowners can do to protect themselves in the event of a robbery is to have a high-quality surveillance system installed, so that police can better identify robbers after the fact.
It is best for store employees and patrons to comply with demands in the event of a robbery, as potential for injury is high for those who try to intervene, Carlson added.
The 16-year-old male, who cannot be named under the Youth Criminal Justice Act, has been charged with one count of robbery and two counts of possession of a weapon.