Store on Do Not Patronize While Armed list robbed, clerk pistol-whipped

May. 05, 2004
Akron Beacon-Journal

Dairy Mart clerk injured in holdup
Robber strikes worker on head with pistol before fleeing with cash

A robber entered a busy West Market Street convenience store Tuesday and struck a clerk in the head with a gun before fleeing with the store's cash.

The holdup occurred about 10:50 a.m. at the Dairy Mart at West Market and Rhodes Avenue, just east of the Highland Square area. Six customers were in the store when a hooded man walked in and pointed a handgun at the clerk, police said.

"I was at the lottery machine and had just rung something up for a customer when he showed me his gun,'' the clerk, Mustapha Taoufik, recalled later. "He put the gun in my face and said, 'Open the register and give me all your money.' ''

Taoufik worked nervously to punch buttons on the register so it would open. Once he got the register to cooperate, he started handing over the money.

The robber raised his gun.

"He knocked me in my head with his gun and then took the rest of the money,'' Taoufik said. "Sometimes (robbers) are not satisfied. They want to hit somebody, too.''

When the gunman walked out of the store, he headed north across Merriman Road.

"He left really cool,'' Taoufik said. "He was not in a hurry.''

Later, on nearby Charlotte Street, police found a purple Chevrolet Cavalier believed to be connected to the robbery. Officers took pictures of the car and had it towed away.

Police charged Edward Morton, 23, of Cuyahoga Street with aggravated robbery. He was being held at the Summit County Jail on Tuesday night.

Taoufik was struck hard enough to draw blood. He was treated for the injury at Akron General Medical Center.

The store owners declined to be interviewed about the incident. They said they didn't want "negative publicity.''

If they didn't want negative publicity, the owners should never have made this store a disarmed victim zone.

Does ANYONE believe this criminal would have walked into the Ashtabula BP station at the intersection of Rt. 45 and I-90, after having read THIS sign?

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