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Businessman beaten and robbed at gunpoint

Businessman beaten and robbed at gunpoint

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Automobile valuator Dennis Joyette is cautioning other businessmen to be more vigilant, in light of a wave of burglaries and assaults being experienced by businessmen.{{more}}

Joyette himself became the latest of these victims, when he was beaten and robbed last Saturday morning. His auto supplies and repair shop was also burglarized.

Speaking exclusively to SEARCHLIGHT yesterday, Joyette, in his mid seventies, said that he believes his assailants were waiting for him at his Murray Village garage, when he turned up shortly after ten in the morning.

The garage is not usually opened on Saturdays.

“I opened up the gate and come in. I had some milk for some puppies, so I slide them on the floor and I went back out to offload some dog food…. I was hustling because I wanted to get to the post office before 11 o’clock, Joyette recounted.

“So as I come back to the door, I recognize that this light was off… it is supposed to be on.”

Joyette said that instead of going into his office, he decided to go into the office staff area. It was then that he was accosted by two men.

He said the men were completely covered in black “diving suits”, with small goggles covering their eyes, which made it impossible for him to discern their features.

“As I hit right there, this guy just jump up from behind the counter, and this one other just jump up from behind there (behind a desk), both of them move up at the same time.

“And as soon as this one jump, he hook my neck, and was telling me is ‘way the keys, we want the keys, way the keys?’ The other one didn’t say anything.

“I couldn’t do anything, and the other one come and he burst my head with one of them little black things that you see on television that the police use, and then we started wrestling.

“They put me on the ground and they started choking me.

“I was bleeding like hell.

Joyette said that he had his licensed firearm in his pocket, which he pulled out, but did not fire because he didn’t have a clear shot.

He said that one of the assailants took away the weapon and put it to his head, causing him to give up the fight.

“I said to my God, ‘Lord is this the way I should go? If not see me through this’,” he told SEARCHLIGHT.

“I went and I opened up the room in the back there for them, and they got some money that I had there. I think they got over $8,000, and they took some of my wife’s jewellery, they didn’t carry everything, because I pleaded with them and said don’t do it, this is my wife’s possession.”

“After they done that, they pushed me in the room and they bolt the door behind me,” Joyette said.

“Fortunately for me, I had my cell phone and I called my handyman, who lives over the back, and I explain to him what happening, so he run over. It took him less than 15 minutes.

Joyette said that he also called his wife, who was in the city at the time, as well as the police, whom he credited for their prompt response.

The businessman said that when he was let out of the room, he realized that the crooks also stole his vehicle, which was recovered about two hours later in the Sion Hill area.

Joyette was taken to the Milton Cato Memorial Hospital, where he was treated and released.

He received 15 stitches to his head and three to his right wrist.

The father of six and proud grandfather said that he is grateful to be alive, and used the opportunity to thank the police, nurses, and persons who called to wish him well.

He also called on business owners to be aware of the people who come around their commercial property, some of them claiming to be legitimate customers.

“They have to be on the alert, and business people have been targeted now so we cant just sit down.…

“We have to be careful in our business places, they have to be cautious with people coming, saying they want to do business with you, this is what they are doing. They are coming saying they want to do business and you have to careful.”

He confirmed that additional measures would be taken to make the compound more secure.

Police are investigating the matter.

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