Clerk: 1 ... Bad Guy: 0


December 7, 2004, 01:20 AM

No Charges Filed Against Clerk Who Shot Suspected Robber
Man Charged With Robbery

UPDATED: 8:50 PM EST December 6, 2004

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- The Franklin County Sheriff's Office announced Monday that the convenience store clerk who shot a suspected robber would not face charges.

The shooting unfolded at 7:30 a.m. Sunday inside a Sunoco gas station on Cleveland Avenue, NBC 4 reported.

Investigators said it was clear that the clerk, Karen Smith, feared for her life.

The alleged robbery and shooting were captured by the store's surveillance camera.

Detective Drew McEvoy told NBC 4's Holly Hollingsworth that the robbery suspect, Desmond Thompson, made the clerk believe he had a gun even though he didn't.

"You can see where (Thompson has) got his left hand in his pocket and he's banging on the counter, implying he's got a weapon," McEvoy said.

The second factor is easy to miss if you're not looking for it on the tape, Hollingsworth reported.

The clerk, Karen Smith, gave the robber cash. But instead of just leaving, Thompson motioned and demanded that she come out from behind the counter.

"If (Smith) wasn't in fear for her life before, with him implying a gun, she's definitely in fear for her life now," McEvoy said. "We have no idea what he's thinking."

Smith grabbed a gun from under the counter and fired once, hitting Thompson, 26, in the shoulder. She then called 911, Hollingsworth reported.

"He acted like he did (have a weapon)," Smith said. "I didn't hesitate."

"Potential robbers: The best advice I can give is don't rob a store where Mrs. Smith is working," McEvoy said.

Smith told Hollingsworth that she had never fired a gun before in her life.

Thompson was charged with one count of robbery.I <3 Happy Endings

Mike :D

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December 7, 2004, 01:31 AM
Nice story Mike!

Now if we would get smart and hit him with all the medical bills for getting patched up, put him in prison where he belongs and not let him out until every last dime was paid, we would be doing it right.
At a prison salary of around a dollar a day with medical bills surely in the thousands, we won't be seeing him any time soon.

Gary :neener:

December 7, 2004, 02:58 AM
Someone needs to teach this gal FTS :)

In all seriousness, I'm darn proud of her. I'd have likely just pissed my pants.

December 7, 2004, 07:37 AM
Smith told Hollingsworth that she had never fired a gun before in her life. :what:

A similar story outside Fort Belvoir yesterday didn't end so happily. A 14 YO Army dependent who lived on base stuck up a 7-11 near the base with a knife. The clerk scuffled with the misguided youth and got stabbed in the chest. He died. :(

Ironic in that even though it's in fairfax County where CCW is legal (shall-issue), IIRC, 7-11 prohibits employees from carrying. This clerk was a 20-year veteran with 7-11.

TFL Survivor

Art Eatman
December 7, 2004, 07:50 AM
Leatherneck, a 7-11 clerk in Odessa, Texas, shot a robber. 7-11 fired the clerk. Job offers poured in from all over the Midland-Odessa area.


December 7, 2004, 10:08 AM
Smith told Hollingsworth that she had never fired a gun before in her life.

Even without training and a qualification test she and everyone else should be able to defend themselves. I hope she gets trained and I would bet she will do so and get her own CHL. I do not believe the training should be required.

December 7, 2004, 11:30 AM
There is no training requirement to own/use a gun, only to get a CCW permit...which was not an issue here, as she was on private property when she ventilated this bad guy. On film.


Mike ;)

Matt G
December 7, 2004, 12:24 PM
I love happy endings.

"Potential robbers: The best advice I can give is don't rob a store where Mrs. Smith is working," McEvoy said.

Let's hear it for Detective McEvoy for taking the perfect tone. Note that there's none of that silly crap about "The P.D.'s stance is that civilians [sic] shouldn't take matters into their own hands by attempting to use a firearm to stop a robbery, as this could result in unnecessary violence..."

How refreshing to hear it told the way most cops really feel. Hope he doesn't get in trouble with the PIO for that! :)

Last week, here in Dallas/Ft Worth we had a separate carjacking and a convenience store robbery stopped by armed citizens shooting the bad guy, on the same day! I was actually a little surprised that the newsies that were reporting on the incidents didn't decide to do a little sidebar on that. Maybe if we get three in a row in time for the 10 o'clock news... ;) There's such a simple message here: it's extremely dangerous to threaten another person with bodily harm to attempt to deprive them of property that isn't yours. Don't do it!

December 7, 2004, 01:25 PM
Awesome, LEOs cant be everywhere. Good for her!

December 7, 2004, 01:27 PM
They showed the video on Fox News. She did a fine job. I would not have thought she had never fired a handgun. Not only did her shooting technique not look to bad she never did let her arm drop from holding the firearm on him even with him writhing on the floor. Looked O:K to me. He picked the wrong person to rob.

December 7, 2004, 02:11 PM
Not to beat a dead horse here, but man, you have GOT to move out of that neighborhood.

December 7, 2004, 03:59 PM
[sniff]I love happy endings. Did he die? :)

Didn't see that in the article.

Matt G
December 7, 2004, 05:33 PM
You know what? For her, this was likely better. She doesn't have to go to Grand Jury, and no worry about that niggling conscience thing she might have to deal with. (Yes, I'm absolutely aware that it was a good shoot and would have been a good kill, but emotions aren't always sensible, and people can sometimes be bothered, having killed an unarmed man.) And with that quote out there and the video, the guy'd be crazy to try to sue her. Oh, he could try, but who would want to represent such a loser of a case?

And who knows? He may now mend his ways, and after he gets out may become an upstanding member of the community. Rehabilitation through the introduction of Element #82. :)

Standing Wolf
December 7, 2004, 06:19 PM
Smith told Hollingsworth that she had never fired a gun before in her life.

The original point and click user interface is still the best. I'll bet she puts in some range time in the near future.

December 7, 2004, 08:07 PM
Glad she is safe and BG is being charged. Another one for the good guys.

Never Give up!!!!!!!!!!!!

December 7, 2004, 08:14 PM
I saw the tape. She snatched that gun from under the counter and zapped that idiot so quickly you could barely follow the action.

Classic three shots, three feet and three seconds deal only this gal was thrifty with the bullets.

She did not use the sights either as you could easily tell she was compulsively focused on the idiot.

I was slightly amazed at her ability to not keep shooting. Looked like a snubby to me.

December 7, 2004, 08:15 PM
Saw the tape of that on FOX today - all I can say is SWEET! :)

December 7, 2004, 09:10 PM
Same here. This woman made my day.

To the badguy: "Does it hurt."


December 7, 2004, 09:12 PM
I actually saw that on CNN of all channels. I think heck has frozen over...CNN showing someone using a firearm defensively and making a point that it was completely legitimate self defense!!!

Didn't look like much recoil. .22?

Matt G
December 7, 2004, 09:14 PM
Okay, I just watched the video on NBCi's "Feedroom"-- I think this link will take you to it:

If not, do a search on "clerk" and click on the "clerk speaks of shooting alleged robber" story. She's great. Very well spoken. She said that she'd been robbed twice before, and that if the man had only taken the money and run, she would have just pushed the panic button and let him go. She said that when he ordered her out, she thought of her child, and said,"Well, if I go, I'm at least gonna shoot him first." Heh.

I note, by the way, that she shot at him TWICE! He goes down the second she brings the gun up over the counter, which is when I think she fired first. Then when he's on the ground rolling, you can see that a display case goes flying when her second shot misses him by a fraction of an inch, down near the floor. Hey, she felt he was still a threat. I've got NO problem with that shot. I also agree that she showed self control not to shoot it dry.

Looks like a snubby, though the pic is grainy.

December 7, 2004, 09:28 PM about composure. Way to go Ms. Smith.

I would be curious to know what caliber and load she used. Calling inspector Coronach......

December 8, 2004, 12:26 AM
That would be "large enough" and "heavy enough", respectively.

In all seriousness, no idea. I'll ask around, though. And Pete? You aren't kidding.

Mike ;)

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