Renton store clerk thwarts robbery attempt

RENTON, Wash. -- A quick-thinking and brave convenience store clerk in Renton was able to thwart an attempted robbery last week while also helping police catch the alleged crook.

The evening began like any other night shift for cashier Robin Rice, but then she spotted someone who didn't look right inside her Rainier Avenue AM-PM.

"There was someone who kind of looked suspicious," she said.

Moments later, Rice's worst fear began to unfold.

"Is this is really happening right now?" she said. "Am I really being robbed?"

Rice said the man approached her with a pen and paper and wrote her a note demanding money. The whole thing was captured on surveillance video.

She didn't know whether the man was armed or violent, but Rice knew she wasn't giving him the money.

"I told him no, that he needed to leave," Rice said.

With the robber standing in front of her, Rice slowly pulled her phone out of her back pocket and dialed 911 without the robber noticing.

"It was very bold," said store manager Maria Lane. "I was really proud of her the way the way that she handled it."

Rice told the 911 dispatcher she was being robbed. When the robber turned around and left the store a short time later, police were waiting for him.

"She prevented any loss of property or harm to herself, and because she acted so quickly they apprehend him as well," Lane said.

Lane said Renton police are now paying extra close attention to the store to help curb crime in the neighborhood.