Wednesday 21 February 2024
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Nottingham shopkeeper and father-of-five fights off armed robber at his shop

A brave shopkeeper who fought off an armed robber before his friend wrestled him to the ground has spoken of his ordeal.

Father-of-five Freydun Sakhi valiantly fought back after a masked man with a knife threatened him and demanded cash at the store.

Realising this was no easy target, the suspect then tried to flee but his escape plan failed when Mr Sakhi’s friend, who happened to be there fixing a leak, stopped him in his tracks and performed a citizen’s arrest.

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The knife was taken off him and he was detained until officers arrived.

Police arrested a 30-year-old man on suspicion of robbery in connection with the incident at OK Food Store in Radford Road, Hyson Green, at around 5.30pm yesterday (Sunday 1 August).

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Mr Sakhi, who has run the store for eight years, said: “The man came in with a knife and demanded money from the till. I grabbed a screwdriver to defend myself and then he came over and started attacking me.

“He tried to stab me a few times but I managed to get the knife off him. At that point he picked up two bottles of Lambrini and smashed them both over my head.

“I felt really dizzy after that and I couldn’t stand up. He tried to run off after that but my friend who was fixing a leak for me round the back came out and stopped him leaving.

“The police arrived really quickly and arrested him. I don’t want him to do this to me or anyone else again so I’m pleased he didn’t get away. My friend did brilliantly to stop him.”

Mr Sakhi, 54, is now recovering at home having been discharged from Queen’s Medical Centre, where he was treated for gashes and cuts to his head, hand and neck.

He said: “I can only afford to take one day off work because I have to pay the rent. If I don’t work, I don’t earn any money.

“I’m just lucky I wasn’t more seriously injured. I’ve got five children and they’re relieved I’m OK. They’re not very happy that I fought the man, but I had to defend myself.”

Detective Sergeant Lee Cattell said he was pleased a man was in custody and paid tribute to the handyman who intervened.

“This was an incredibly brave act by the shopkeeper’s friend who put himself at risk in order to apprehend a suspect,” he said.

“Clearly no-one wants to see hard working people who serve the community in a local shop being targeted in this way and it is really heartening to hear that this handyman didn’t want to let the suspect escape after subjecting the shopkeeper to this horrific attack.

“The quick response by officers combined with his actions meant a man was quickly arrested.

“While we would never encourage anyone to escalate and incident or put themselves in danger, the shopkeeper and his friend did a fantastic job and enabled police to take over, bringing the incident to as safe a conclusion as possible.

“Thankfully the shopkeeper’s injuries are not life altering or life threatening but he was shaken up by the incident.

“Although the suspect is in custody, we appreciate this was a frightening incident for the local community. Therefore we have increased patrols in the area to provide extra reassurance as we continue with our investigation.”

Anyone who witnessed the incident is also urged to contact police on 101 quoting incident number 551 of 1 August.