10/2/2014

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Police: Citizens team up to apprehend shoplifter

SEATTLE -- Enough with stories about overheating pigs and violent Pridefests; let's talk about some people helping their fellow man.

According to the Seattle Police Department, two concerned citizens teamed up to apprehend a shoplifter who had escaped from the owners of a South Park convenience store Saturday afternoon.

The suspect came into the store in the 8900 block of 14th Avenue South shortly before 1 p.m. and asked to buy some cigarettes and a lighter. But, while the female owner of the store rang up the items the suspect grabbed them and walked out, according to the police report for the incident.

The owner followed the suspect and grabbed his backpack to keep him from riding off on a bicycle. According to the report, the owner fell to the ground while maintaining her hold on the suspect, and he dragged her along the sidewalk.

The owner's husband, who had been napping on the floor behind the store's counter during the robbery, came out to help his wife, according to the report.

Meanwhile, a man working across the street heard the female owner screaming and went outside to see her and her husband struggling with the suspect.

According to the report, the suspect escaped the store's owners and ran into the street, nearly getting hit by a car. The near-miss slowed the suspect down enough for the man who had been working across the street to put him in a bear hug and take him to the ground.

A second citizen soon joined the man in the street, helping him hold the struggling suspect down.

A passing driver stopped to ask if the men needed help holding the suspect down and got out of his car to join them. When the new arrival told the suspect to stop struggling, the suspect reportedly said the man didn't have a right to intervene unless he was a cop. The man answered that he was indeed a police officer and showed his badge, at which point the suspect settled down.

When additional officers arrived on the scene, the suspect would not stop yelling at the men who had been holding him down and was placed in the back of a patrol car, according to the report. He also reportedly faked a feinting spell and a seizure. He was eventually booked into King County Jail for investigation of robbery.

The female owner of the store suffered injuries to her knee, foot and hand, including a possibly broken finger, while fighting with the suspect. Her husband just had some minor scrapes.

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