Dramatic surveillance footage reveals that an elderly California liquor store owner shot an intruder armed with an AR-15 rifle who was attempting to rob his business.
The 80-year-old man then suffered a heart attack immediately after the shooting.
Craig Cope’s message to any future burglars is that “this isn’t a good place to pick.”
According to a press release issued by the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department, Cope was working inside his liquor store in Norco, California on July 31 when a guy armed with an AR-15 approached his business at approximately 2:47 in the morning.
The main suspect, a 23-year-old man, then pointed his AR-15 at the 80-year-old Cope while three additional suspects were waiting outside, per the press release.
Surveillance footage reveals that the old man, who had been hiding behind the counter, quickly used his shotgun to shoot the armed gunman after spotting him as soon as he entered the liquor store.
“He shot my arm off, he shot my arm off,” the 23-year-old man can be heard screaming while running out of the building.
It was around then when, Cope, who has been the store’s owner for the past 55 years, had a heart attack and was rushed to a nearby hospital.
According to the information provided by the sheriff’s department, the four suspects made their getaway in a BMW SUV that had been reported stolen.
Later, law enforcement officers searched the vehicle and found further evidence and firearms connected to the failed robbery attempt.
In an interview that took place on Wednesday (August 3) with Fox 11 News, Cope stated that he was doing “a lot better” than he had been doing that night.
He made light of the situation by joking that he had no idea what brought on the heart attack, suggesting to Fox 11 News: “Maybe I’m just old.”
The suspects were soon located at a hospital. According to the sheriffs department, the main gunman who is still hospitalized in a critical but stable condition, is in police custody.
The three other suspects were apprehended by police in the hospital parking lot and placed in jail on a bail of $500,000 for robbery and conspiracy.
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