Armed robbery thwarted as gas station clerk fights back

HOLLYWOOD, FLA. (WSVN) - An armed robber was caught on camera attempting to beat a gas station clerk with a pipe, until the employee decided to fight back.

On Friday, Oct. 14, surveillance video showed a black male, believed to be in his 20s, entering the Shamrock Gas Station, located at 5600 Washington St. in Hollywood, with a metal pipe in his left hand.

The footage showed the subject entering the convenience store wearing an Atlanta Braves baseball cap and carrying a metal pipe, at around 2 p.m. Then, as the clerk attempted to walk into the secured office, the armed robber struck the clerk in the back of the head with the metal pipe.

“He just hit me in the back right here, when I was trying to come to the register. He punched me,” said the clerk, Mohammed Shahadat.

The man in the video continued to strike the clerk with both his fists and pipe. The employee, who was about to end his shift when the incident took place, then fought back and managed to take the pipe away, which prevented the robbery.

“He was basically trying to rob the store,” said Shahadat. “He hit me back and tried to leave me unconscious, so whatever he can get, he can get. But God saved me, you know?”

“It’s brutal. It was absolutely brutal,” said Joe Cimino, a mechanic who works next door to the gas station. “To just do that to somebody, to just grab a pipe and start beating somebody who you don’t even know, for no reason other than to just rob the place, it’s inhuman.”

There were people pumping gas at the station, as well as mechanics working on vehicles next door, at the time of the incident. “It’s pretty brazen, because we looked at the video, and he walked from the other lot with the pipe in his hand, all the way into the store,” said mechanic Greg Shell.

When it was clear that Shahadat wasn’t giving up, the assailant ran out with nothing.

Shell said the clerk’s head was bleeding profusely after the attack. “He was bleeding pretty bad from the back corner, and also from the front,” he said. “He was holding a T-shirt on the front, but I guess he didn’t realize he was cut in the back as well, so I dressed the wound in the back and had him hold pressure, and then I dressed the wound in the front. With the amount of blood that was coming out of him, I’m really surprised he was conscious after.”

Shahadat has since recovered and is in stable condition. Monday afternoon, he showed 7News a permanent scar at the top of his head and another scar on the side of the head.

The clerk said that, despite the brutality of the attack, he feels fortunate that his injuries were not more serious. “The doctor said, “You’re lucky nothing happened to your brain or anything,’ so God bless,” he said.

Now back at work, Shahadat had a message for his attacker. “You’ve got to stop that [expletive]. It’s just crazy, you know,” he said.

The alleged robber in the video was last seen with a full beard, sunglasses and long pants. Police added the armed robber is standing at about 5 feet 5 inches and 175 pounds.

If you have any information on his whereabouts, call Broward County Crime Stoppers at 954-493-TIPS. Remember, you can always remain anonymous, and you may be eligible for a $3,000 reward.

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