'Scariest' shopkeeper fights off armed robber

By Alistair Keely,Pa
Sunday 23 October 2011 05:28

Police today praised the bravery of a shopkeeper who fought off an armed robber, but urged anyone in a similar situation to dial 999.

Mike Komorowski was confronted by a masked man at his shop on King Lane, Alwoodley, Leeds, who pointed a gun in his face.

CCTV footage shows Mr Komorowski attempting to grab the weapon before chasing the empty-handed robber down the street. The raider was never caught.

The dramatic footage has now been posted on YouTube under the heading: The Scariest Shopkeeper in the West?

West Yorkshire Police said the shopkeeper's actions were "extremely brave" but they urged people to dial 999 rather than risk their own safety.

A spokesman for West Yorkshire Police said: "At around 7.30pm on Friday 18 June, police were called to an attempted armed robbery at an off-licence on King Lane in the Alwoodley area of Leeds.

"One suspect, who was wearing a balaclava, but is thought to be a white male, entered the premises and threatened a member of staff with what appeared to be a firearm.

"The shopkeeper attempted to grab the weapon, which was wrapped in some form of material.

"At this point the suspect ran from the shop where he was chased by the shopkeeper.

"He is then thought to have left the area in a black new-style Ford Focus vehicle which was driven by an accomplice and seen heading towards the Leeds ring-road (A6120).

"While the actions of the shopkeeper in confronting the suspect were extremely brave, we do not encourage people to risk their own safety and would always advise ringing the police.

"Inquiries into this incident are ongoing and anyone with information, particularly around the suspect vehicle being in Alwoodley or seen leaving the scene, are asked to contact DC Sweeting at Killingbeck CID via 0845 606 0606."

Mr Komorowski told the BBC: "I made a decision - thankfully it was the right one at the time. It could have gone a lot worse.

"I don't know what was going through my head other than 'how dare you stick a gun in my face?"'

Officers are appealing for anyone with information about the incident to come forward.