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Man tries to rob Papa John’s and has change of heart

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Helena Police are looking for a man who initially tried to rob Papa John's Pizza on 1302 Prospect Avenue, early this morning.

But because the man had a surprising change of heart, Chief Troy McGee says he doesn't know exactly what police would charge him with.  Helena Police Chief Troy McGee says around midnight, a male suspect in a black Carhartt hooded jacket with a red bandana over his face, walked into the local Papa John's Pizza as the staff was closing shop.  The 5 foot 9 man with slender build walked straight up to the clerk at the counter.

McGee says, "He presented the clerk with a note which indicated something to the effect of 'Do what I say and no one will get hurt.'"

McGee says the clerk took out money, and was going to give it to the suspect, when the suspect broke down and began crying.  McGee says according to the clerk, the man said the reason for his actions was he was trying to provide for his wife and family, who were hungry.

The clerk then talked to him for a few minutes, and decided to make the man a pizza and some chicken wings.  The man sat at a table and waited as staff made the pizza.  The clerk gave the man the food, and the man left, walking east down Prospect Avenue.  McGee says the incident is very unique.

McGee says, "In Helena, I don't recall recently something like this has happened.  We have had a few in the past where people have changed their minds.  But actually sitting down and waiting for the food and that sort of thing, no."

McGee says considering the circumstances, the clerk handled the situation

McGee says, "I'd say the clerk was pretty astute  I mean he knows how to talk to this person.  Kind of comiserated with him a little.  Talked to him about it and you know actually changed his mind about robbing the place.  That was pretty good."

McGee says the man was armed with a knife, but did not threaten anyone with it.


Story by Charlie Misra, Beartooth NBC.
Copyright ©2013 Beartooth Communications Company. All Rights Reserved.





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