WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — One day after a Wilmington convenience store clerk shot a would-be robber, we’re getting a look at the shooting and hearing more from the store owner.
The Wrightsville Country Store has seen its fair share of robberies recently, but Thursday, clerk Mark Headstrong had seen enough.
In video from the store’s surveillance cameras you can see the robber, who police say is Joseph Ryan Anderson, 20, point a gun at Headstrong. The clerk then pulls a gun of his own and shoots the crook twice then holds him until police arrive.
“I’m sorry. Please. You shot me, man,” Anderson says after he’s shot. “Please. I’m not gonna go no where. Just call the police. Please let me go.”
If store owner Musa Agil had his way, Anderson would not have had the chance to ask for mercy.
“He should have killed him, and this guy was soft on him,” Agil said. “He was trying to give him a second chance. Thugs like those should not ever be given a chance, because if that man shot mark, he’s not going to look at him and give him a chance. That’s why mark made a terrible mistake by letting him go.”
In an article in friday’s StarNews a Wilmington Police spokeswoman suggested clerks should just give up money and not risk the violence.
Agil strongly disagrees.
“If the spokesperson of the police department thinks, or is sure that if we cooperate and hand him the money they will leave us alone, then of course, yeah, I agree with that. But there is no guarantee that we give them the money and they leave us alone,” Agil said. “That’s why she should say, ‘Drop them dead if you can, because it may be your last chance to do so.'”
Wilmington Police Chief Ralph Evangelous seemed to understand why Headstrong decided to shoot the suspect.
“It’s unfortunate any time anyone gets shot, but people have to do what people have to do to protect themselves,” Evangelous said.
Agil says he hopes this serves as a warning for anyone who thinks about robbing one of his stores in the future. He also has advice for other convenience store workers.
“Ask your corporation, if you work for corporate, to arm you, because you do not want to be easy prey,” Agil said.
Police say Anderson will be charged with armed robbery and possession of a firearm from a felon when he gets out of the hospital.
Headstrong said Anderson’s girlfriend came to the store in tears today and asked if Headstrong planned to press charges. He said he does not and is concerned about how Anderson is doing.