VANITA PRASAD / Fairfax NZ
BATTLE SCARS: Zahid Chaudry managed to scare off the intruder by confronting him.
An armed robber got more than he bargained for when he attempted to steal from Zahid Chaudry's petrol station.
The Swanson GAS station owner was on his computer about 8pm on Thursday when an armed man confronted him.
Chaudry said instinct kicked in when he saw the offender's pistol and balaclava.
"I just pushed him across the store and thought I have to get him out of here."
He began beating the robber who started smashing him in the face with the butt of his weapon.
"We were still fighting, I didn't want to give up, he didn't want to give up."
Chaudry began to get the better of his assailant by throwing him on to the concrete forecourt and removing his disguise.
He continued defending his store while a regular customer pulled up outside and called 111.
Chaudry said the man, who looked in his mid-40s with a goatee, gave up and ran to a getaway car waiting on Swanson Rd.
Another resident who saw the getaway pursued the vehicle, getting the driver's registration plate number.
Mechanic John Dormer from neighbouring business Candia Automotive said Chaudry had defended his store bravely.
"He deserves a bravery award," Dormer said.
Chaudry has been told by many people that he was stupid for fighting the robber, but he stands by his actions.
"If something happened to me who would be there for my wife and daughter? But if I did not fight him he'd just be back for more."
He said he and his wife have owned the station for five years but had never been attacked.
He is grateful to the two people who helped: "I love Swanson and I love the people who live here."
The offender left in a purple or burgundy 1990's Holden Commodore Sedan. The car was last seen in the Massey area.
Police are investigating the incident.
Tamera Walker wasn't about to just sit there and cry when a "monster man" tried to abduct her a few blocks from her Lower Hutt home on Wednesday.
The 12-year-old knew exactly how much danger she was in, so she fought back - kicking her attacker in the leg and whacking him with her skateboard.
It was enough to give her the opening she needed to escape the man's clutches and run home to safety.
She told The Dominion Post she was feeling a lot better yesterday after her frightening ordeal on Wednesday night.
She was walking along Randwick Rd about 7pm, on her way to get an icecream from the Moera shops, when she noticed a man peering at her from a parked car.
"The window was wound down a little bit and he was just staring at me. He was quite scary-looking, so I started walking a bit faster.
"Then he jumped out of the car and grabbed my shoulders."
All she could think about at that moment was getting home to her parents. They had taught her about "stranger danger", and she remembered their advice to resist and make as much noise as possible to attract help. Using the skateboard was her own idea.
She suffered a small graze to her knee after her attacker threw her to the ground but was otherwise fine, she said.
"I'm still pretty shaken. But at the same time, I feel quite proud of myself.
"Next time I go for a walk to the shops, I'll be taking my sister or my brother with me," Tamera said.
Tamera's mother, Judy, said: "I'm just so proud of her. She could have just sat there and cried but to react the way she did in a situation like that was just amazing. I don't know what I would have done myself.
"She's pretty fit from all the sports she plays at school, and she's feisty too, so she was never going to back down."
Mrs Walker, who has three other children aged 14 to 19, said she would be speaking to them all about how to stay safe on the streets and she urged other parents to do the same with their kids.
Detective Iain Burns, of Lower Hutt, said Tamera's attacker was thought to be a Maori aged in his 30s, with short dark hair and a beard.
He had a deep voice and was wearing dark sunglasses, black trackpants with white strips and a black hooded sweatshirt with long draw-strings. He walked with a noticeable limp.
The car involved in the incident was black and similar to a Nissan Primera. It had gold-rimmed wheels and a dent in the passenger door.
Anyone with information is asked to contact Lower Hutt police on 04 560 2600 or anonymously via Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111
Dramatic footage of a liquor store worker with a hockey stick chasing off a knife-wielding robber has been released by police.
The CCTV images give a glimpse of the tense confrontation that unfolded
after two men demanded cash and took alcohol from the Thirsty Liquor
bottle store in Upper Hutt last Tuesday.
One shows a man gesturing aggressively with a knife as he stands before
the counter. Another shows the same man in a standoff with a worker
outside the shop.
Detective Sergeant Chris Gooch of Hutt Valley police said the men
entered the store on Fergusson Drive in Silverstream about 5.45pm.
One demanded money from a worker at knifepoint and the second took some bottles of alcohol from a shelf.
The staff member struck one of the offenders with a hockey stick before chasing them both out of the shop.
Mr Gooch said the offenders ran across the railway tracks to a
vehicle waiting in a car park opposite Silverstream Primary School.
The maroon four-door Nissan hatch or similar, with a number plate
starting with the letter T, was last seen driving north along Gard St.
Police have released the CCTV images in the hope they will help to identify the offenders.
"We would like to hear from anyone who may have been in the vicinity of
Thirsty Liquor at the time of the aggravated robbery last Tuesday night
or from anyone who has any other relevant which may assist police,'' Mr
Staff at the store were reluctant to talk about the incident today,
saying the matter was being dealt with by police and they did not want
to comment in the media.
Anyone with any information should contact Hutt Valley Police on (04) 560 2600 or phone Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.
A 15-year-old girl has been hailed for her bravery after fighting off a man who attacked her in daylight on a rural Bay of Plenty road.
Police said the girl was dropped off by her school bus at the corner of Gulliver Rd and State Highway 2 at about 4.00pm yesterday.
She was walking along Gulliver Road when she was attacked from behind by an offender described as a tall, skinny Indian man who was about 20 years old.
The girl fought off her attacker after a short struggle, police said.
He ran off in the direction of State Highway 2.
Detective Sergeant Ryan Yardley praised the victim for fighting off her attacker.
"The actions of the girl were brave and she is recovering with her family"
"This is a concerning incident and we are treating it seriously."
Mr Yardley called on parents to be vigilant while police hunted the offender.
"Whilst we don't want the community to be unduly alarmed it is clearly important that we identify this offender.
"Parents can tell their children to immediately report anything suspicious to police or a trusted adult and look out for each other if they out walking with a friend."
Someone may have given the offender a ride to an area near where the attack took place, Mr Yardley said.
He appealed for anyone who had seen someone who matched the description of the offender to come forward to police.
YOU CAN HELP:
To give information on the case call Te Puke police on 07 573 9147 or the anonymous Crimestoppers line on 0800 555 111.
US authorities say a father who caught a man sexually assaulting his four-year-old daughter and beat him to death may not face charges.
The father, from Texas, punched the man repeatedly in the head, killing him, Lavaca County Sheriff Micah Harmon said.
The girl had been left inside the family's house during a social gathering on Saturday while other members of her family were tending to horses, Sheriff Harmon told CNN.
He said the father returned to the house and caught the man abusing his daughter before unleashing his attack. The man was pronounced dead at the scene.
The girl was taken to a local hospital for examination before being released and was "OK besides the obvious mental trauma," Harmon said.
He said the father was ''very remorseful'' and did not know the other man was going to die.
"You have a right to defend your daughter," Harmon said after being asked whether police would press charges against the girl's father.
''He acted in defence of [of her]. Once the investigation is completed we will submit it to the district attorney who then submits it to the grand jury, who will decide if they will indict him.''
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