The local newspaper story is here. You only see part of it unless you subscribe. Basically, the robber was distracted with pulling money out of the cash drawer, which was placed on the counter and the clerk took the initiative, snatching the robber’s gun. The gun was dropped. The robber then fled, leaving the cash and the gun behind. Oops. He later came back and turned himself in– probably not a bad idea, given the circumstances.
One of the radio reports has the cops telling us, after this incident, not to fight back– to do whatever the criminals tell us to do. Uh, hey Skippy: isn’t that exactly the sort of advice that enabled the 9/11 attacks?
You can’t really plan ahead for what you’ll do, and you certainly cannot second guess the actions of the clerk. What happened this time, and what happens time and time again, is that someone recognizes an opportunity to stop a crime, and then takes that opportunity while the taking is good. That’s all.
I wouldn’t call it an act of will so much as a reflexive reaction based on a split second certainty, founded in basic principles. My son once recounted an incident at school wherein he had a habitual bully pinned to the floor, crying, before Son even really knew what had happened. No; you don’t plan this stuff, but you don’t want to be hamstrung by stupid advice from cops and other wannabe authorities either.
Good for that clerk for having the presence of mind plus the wherewithal to act. He used his bare hands against an armed robber, no one was hurt, and the robber is in custody.