McKie’s Hill shopkeeper fights off armed bandits
A McKie’s Hill shopkeeper who tussled with one of three gunmen who entered his shop on Wednesday is thankful to be alive.
Elvin “Eddie” Edwards was sitting in his shop bagging plums at about 1:40 p.m. when a light skinned man wearing a red shirt and short pants entered the establishment and asked for three Ju-c soft drinks.
Edwards said when he opened the refrigerator to get the drinks, the man jumped over the counter, trained a gun on him and told him to shut up, hand over the money and get down on the floor.
Edwards said while the first gunman shouted instructions to him, the two others also jumped over the counter.
“I did not lie down on the floor. I started to call for help and held onto the gun,” Edwards told SEARCHLIGHT shortly after the incident.
He said that the refrigerator door was opened, and he was on one side of the door while the gunmen were on the other side in a narrow hallway.
“I was behind the fridge with the door open blocking the hallway, so they could not come past the fridge. I held on to the gun and I was trying to pull the gun from the robber so that I could shoot him with it,” recalled Edwards who noted that at some point during the struggle he heard two gunshots.
He said one of the shots hit the fridge door and the other hit the wall behind him.
Edwards said he took up the grill from a stove that was behind him and threw it at the robber with whom he was tussling, striking him in the face.
“Of course, I must thank God I am alive. To be very honest I don’t feel afraid because I know the next time I see somebody come into the shop I don’t know, I would be a lot more guarded.
“I am a guy that don’t give up so easy. People might think that I am stupid, but the fact is, they could have robbed me and still shoot me, but it is not my instinct to give up that easy and if I had something, one of them would be dead,” Edwards said.
The men fled the shop, making good their escape on foot through some nearby bushes. None of them wore masks, but Edwards said he does not know them.
“I feel very troubled by the fact that you have a business and at 1:40 in the day somebody can come into a populated area and rob you,” Edwards vented to SEARCHLIGHT.
His shop is located about 30 feet away from the Intermediate High School (IHS) and at the time of the robbery, classes were in full swing and security guards present.
“They did not get anything. Is the money they were after and I tell them I ain’t handing over no money.
“The crime situation is way out of control, this is not an if or a but, the crime situation is way out of control because if I can be here in my shop at this time of the day, security at the school, very visible, and three guys can come inside here and try to kill me in my shop, it have to be out of control.
“Those things never use to be happening,” Edwards commented while adding that he has never experienced anything like this before and he felt he was safe.
Edwards will celebrate his 67th birthday next month.
“They wanted to kill me before my birthday,” he further commented.
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