Bystanders foil robbery attempt at jewelry store

NANAIMO – Shoppers and store staff chase down and hold alleged jewelry store robber until police arrive.

An alleged thief never counted on customers foiling his plan to make a clean getaway after he attempted to rob a jewelry store Monday.

Plans started to going sideways shortly after 8:25 p.m. when he walked into Paris Jewellers in Woodgrove Centre wearing a motorcycle helmet and allegedly started smashing glass display cases, grabbing gold chains and stuffing them into a duffle bag.

As he was stuffing chains into the bag, a customer tried to grab him and struggle ensued. The suspect broke free and ran for the door without his duffle bag.

He was tackled a second time by another customer, but wiggled free ran for the closest mall exit. As he rounded a corner, and with people yelling ‘robbery,’ a woman tripped him and her male companion jumped on him and held him down.

Several other shoppers joined in, including a man getting a haircut who whipped off his barber cape and dove in to help subdue the suspect until police arrived.

Craig Edward Truckle, 30, of Nanaimo, appeared in Nanaimo provincial court Tuesday to face charges of theft over $5,000 and committing an indictable offence while wearing a mask. He was held in custody until his next court appearance.

“We are often reminded after incidents like these, our community is filled with good people willing to do whatever it takes to correct a wrong,” Const. Gary O’Brien, Nanaimo RCMP spokesman, said in a press release. “Fortunately the stolen goods were returned and no one was injured in the ordeal. We are also sure there will be lots of tales told over the following days on how this all played out and came to a successful conclusion.”

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