Park Slope Store Owner Stops Robber With Trash Can

By Diana Lehnert and DeMarco Morgan
|  Tuesday, Nov 9, 2010  |  Updated 12:46 PM EDT
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Park Slope store owner trashes robber.

Park Slope store owner trashes robber.

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Police need the public's help to identify a man who held up a Brooklyn shop owner and robbed him.

But the store owner didn't let his money go easily -- he used a trash bin to try to can the robber's plan.

The man police are looking for walked into the store at 65 5th Avenue in Prospect Heights last Wednesday afternoon and showed a knife and demanded money.

Instead of complying with the demands, the smoke shop owner fought back with the plastic trash container, hitting the robber on the head and body.

Nevertheless, the robber got away with an unknown amount of cash -- and luckily the shopkeeper was not hurt.

News 4 spoke with the owner by phone.

"I don't know what I was thinking, " said store owner Mohammed Esa.  "When the police came and they asked me what happened, I didn't know what to tell them until I saw the video and started recalling a lot of things."

Esa said he grabbed for anything in his reach when the thug pulled a knife from his pocket on Wednesday while trying to rob his New Star Tobacco Smoke Shop.

He said his store is always packed in the afternoon with school kids and he's grateful none of them were inside his shop when the robbery happened.

Asked if he would do it all over again, the owner quickly responded.

"Yes! Nobody has the right to take what's yours."

Police say the bandit sped away in a late model, green Ford F-250. Anyone with information is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS.

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