Neighboring businesses react after store manager disarms robber

Neighboring merchants react to attempted robbery on Driving Park Avenue

Neighboring merchants react to attempted robbery on Driving Park Avenue

ROCHESTER, N.Y. — A neighborhood is on edge after an armed robber held up a local clothing store. However, that robbery didn’t go as planned: Police say he entered the store on Driving Park Avenue and pulled out a pistol — but the store manager had other ideas, and disarmed the robber.

“Of course, you are going to be concerned — a lot of weird things happening these days,” Moe Abdallah, owner of Park Slope Boutique and Puff Puff Pass Smoke Shop on Driving Park Avenue, said.

He and other neighboring merchants are surprised that this happened but say it’s a sign of the times.

“It put us on edge to where we just being on the lookout even more now. Just in case because you never know,” Kenneth Rivers, owner of Hooked Fish Market, said.

After Rivers learned of the Tuesday’s attempted robbery, he and his staff are staying alert.

“I was looking over my shoulders a little as I walked into the building this morning, just knowing what happened and knowing that it could happen to anybody, it could happen to us — we’re right here,” Rivers said.

Rochester Police say at about 3 p.m. Tuesday, a suspect entered a business on Driving Park Avenue. The suspect pulled out what appeared to be a pistol and attempted to rob the business. The business manager refused, rushed the suspect, and disarmed him. The suspect fled. It turns out the suspect had an imitation handgun.

“I think that it’s sad that we can get to this point where people try to rob people — fake gun. real gun,” Rivers said.

Rivers spoke with that store manager immediately after he learned of the attempted robbery and explained it was some scary moments for him.

“His adrenaline was running kind of high and stuff like that there, so I sat over there and talked to him, you know what I mean, just to calm him down,” he said.

Abdallah, another neighboring business owner who has been in the neighborhood for 20 years, spoke with that manager also and explains he felt he had the upper hand.

“That’s why he did that. Sometimes it works out, sometimes it doesn’t,” he said.

Businesses believe the neighborhood has gone through a lot of ups and downs and it’s important to remain vigilant.

“Watch who comes into your business and don’t sleep on anybody that comes in; you got to be ready because you don’t know what might happen,” Abdallah said.

The Rochester Police Department is investigating and is still looking for that suspect. Police ask anyone with information to contact 911.