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Teen arrested after clerk turns tables during robbery attempt

READ MORE: Teen arrested after clerk turns tables during robbery attempt
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WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) -- For the second time in a month a Wilmington store clerk has turned the tables on a would-be robber. The owner of the store says the man who allegedly tried to rob the store is "lucky to be alive."

The owner of A&J Food Mart on Princess Place Drive says Jaquan Martin said, "Please don't kill me, please don't kill me," when his apparent attempt to rob the store went wrong.

Police say Martin fumbled as he pulled out a gun giving a store clerk a chance to pull a gun of his own. The clerk did not shoot, unlike a foiled robbery attempt last month at another store.

Abdel Homid owns the store right next to A&J. He says he would deal with a situation like that in much the same way.

"I feel like if anyone's going to rob somebody they deserve what they get," said Homid, who said his clerks are armed. "I instruct them if he pulls a gun on them then pull it back on them."

The clerk that pulled the gun at A&J Food Mart did not want to speak to us on camera, but he did say off camera that Martin was simply in the wrong place at the wrong time.

A&J's owner told us off camera that Martin's mother came into the store and kissed the clerk, thanking him for not killing her son.

Homid says the clerk should have at least wounded Martin.

"They should have just let him stay there, for what and shot him in the legs," he said.

Martin escaped with his life, but not from police. Officers caught him in woods near the store and charged with attempted armed robbery.

Last month Police Chief Ralph Evangelous stuck up for clerks who defend their store.

"It's unfortunate any time anyone gets shot, but people have to do what people have to do to protect themselves," Evangelous said.

Martin is due back in court January 5. This is not his first run-in with the law. The 17-year-old was supposed to be in court for separate drug charges Thursday morning. Instead he made his first court appearance for the attempted robbery Thursday afternoon.

Martin is in jail under a $30,000 bond.

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