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WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — You may remember the Wrightsville Country Store clerk who shot a robber in November. Having had no experience with a gun, the store’s owner thought it would be a good idea to get Mark Headstrong some training.

“A gun in a person’s hand that is not trained is really more dangerous than somebody trying to rob you,” said Matt Rhodes, a concealed carry instructor in Wilmington.

Storeowner Musa Agil gave his employees guns and now he is paying for them all to get properly trained.

“I think we owe it to them, said Agil. “We owe it to them to give them the tools to protect themselves, not only that but to give them the proper training to use those tools.”

“It’s an amazing experience to learn how to hold a gun and handle it,” said Headstrong.

The Wrightsville Country Store isn’t the only Wilmington business taking this extra step to protect themselves.

“A lot of people have come to me that own businesses from restaurants, to taxi cab drivers, to people that own convenient stores, because they feel at any time they could be robbed,” said Rhodes.

Headstrong says the training has given him the confidence so that next time he finishes the job.

“I’m going to shoot to kill and not to feel mercy on him or whoever,” he said.

With so many armed robberies in Wilmington, Agil says employees should be able to defend themselves.

“I don’t think you really want your employees to be sitting ducks and helpless and defenseless,” he said. “I think it would be a major mistake”.

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35 Comments on "ONLY ON 3: Victimized store clerk gets shooting lessons"

boycotting this store
2015 years 10 months ago

OK enough is enough!!!!! You were robbed come on. OK you took a class and in that class they tell you the laws also. You just made the comment “I will shoot to kill have no mercy!” For one I would not like to be caught in the store during the shoot out! You are a fool! I have been in the store. And the attention he has received has made him feel popular like he wants you to ask about the robber and talk and talk. Come on you just let anyone that would try you know your move! Sometimes it’s good to stay out the headlines and just do what you have to!! You are not a smart store clerk /owner. U lost me and my family business you sound like a reckless person the more you are interviewed or I here you talk about it!!!!

2015 years 10 months ago

With our shattered legal system and courts I am all in favor of protecting yourself and taking care of your own business. God knows the courts don’t do it. I am all in favor, also, of protecting yourself. Don’t get me wrong. My one concern is this. . . what if the thugs and cretins start coming into these stores shooting first and stealing the money and/or registers second? I’m seriously afraid it will come to that. Lord, I hope not.

2015 years 10 months ago

I’ve been torn on this issue. I’m all in favor of store clerks protecting themselves. Many thugs may think twice before attempting to rob what up until recently has been an easy target. However, the more hardened type of criminal might just start shooting as soon as they come through the door. Either way, the job of being a convenience store clerk just became a lot more dangerous.

2015 years 10 months ago

Being a store owner myself, I am not proud of carrying guns or arming the people that work for us, but can you imagine being a victim yourself. What are the options here: hand over the money that we keep, which is no more than fifty dollars, or fight back? What assurances do we have that we will not get shot after all? I personally remember a single father of three who had a store at 7th and Ann St., who cooperated with the demands of an armed robber 4 years ago, to be shot after that in the heart, leaving behind three orphaned children. Also, it is not to defend or protect our “pot of gold.” There is no pot of gold here; we are barely keeping the lights on. You do not have to fear law-abiding citizens carrying means to protect themselves, but fear guns in the hands of hardcore convicted felons. If we have to shoot one of them, we will be asking God for mercy every second of our lives. Somebody has to take a stand. Today our stores, tomorrow your cars, and the day after, your home. You should not boycott the store, but provide them with your support. You should question our legal system that dumps convicted felons armed with deadly weapons, terrorizing our streets and neighborhoods

2015 years 10 months ago

I have known Mark for many years, and was surprised to see how upset he looked after defending himself during this event. I have been involved with a hold up , it is not an event I would like to relive. At the time, I was thinking, “please don’t shoot me”, that is it. It is not about the amount of money at all, as an employee, it isn’t technically your money. It is about getting this drugged out or otherwise desperate POS away from your body. Without training, give up the cash. With training, stop this thug from carrying out his mission. In my case the man came back 2 weeks later, to everyone’s surprise. The store owner ended the mess- equaling a five year sentence. These types don’t stop until they are jailed or dead (Spider-man). I always thought I knew what I would do, until it happened. I would have no problem stopping a person dead in their tracks to save a fellow citizen from the nightmares of armed-robbery. That fear can ruin a life. Thankfully, mine was changed for the better.


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