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Published: Saturday, 12/23/2006

South Toledo retailer takes on thieves

BY CHRISTINA HALL
BLADE STAFF WRITER
Adnan 'Eddie' Awad describes how he thwarted an attempt by three men to rob his South Toledo clothing store. Adnan 'Eddie' Awad describes how he thwarted an attempt by three men to rob his South Toledo clothing store.
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Adnan "Eddie" Awad isn't afraid to thwart gun-toting robbers.

Three years ago, he knocked a gun out of a robber's hand, twice kneed him in the face, and kicked him out of his brother's South Toledo carryout.

Two days ago, the 24-year-old shoved a shotgun-toting robber at his south-end clothing store, took the man's dropped weapon, and damaged the windows on his getaway van.

"I was scared about my employees, my customers," Mr. Awad said. "I did not want anyone to get hurt."

Three males - two masked and all carrying shotguns - entered Millennium Fashions, 1244 Flaire Drive, about 8:20 p.m. Thursday, pointed their weapons at employees and customers, and demanded money, police said.

An employee gave them money from the cash register as one of the robbers grabbed an armful of coats.

Mr. Awad said he was scared one of the robbers would turn around and shoot as he left the store.

So he shoved one of the robbers, who was the last to enter the store, causing him to drop the coats and shotgun. The robber ran out and jumped into a waiting van. Mr. Awad grabbed the shotgun and chased the trio, police said.

"I tried to shoot, but there were no [shells in the shotgun]," Mr. Awad said, adding he was aiming for the van and didn't want to hurt or kill anyone.

Mr. Awad then used the shotgun to break two side windows and shatter the windshield. The robbers drove eastbound on Dorr Street, police said.

The van believed to be used in the holdup was found by police. It was stolen earlier in the day and has been returned to its owner.

In December, 2003, Mr. Awad thwarted a robbery at his brother's store, South Food Mart, 440 South Ave.

He told the robber to take off his ski mask. Instead, the holdup man put his gun in the clerk's face and demanded money.

Mr. Awad said he told the robber he would have to come and get the money. The man went behind the counter, put his gun in Mr. Awad's face, and demanded money. Mr. Awad again told him to get the money, but the robber demanded cash a third time and threatened to shoot him.

Mr. Awad hit the robber's hand, causing the gun to fall onto the floor. When the robber reached for the weapon, Mr. Awad ripped off his mask and kneed him in the face.

The man jumped for the gun, got it, and hit Mr. Awad in the head with it when the clerk tried to push the robber's hand. Mr. Awad then kicked the man out of the store.

Mr. Awad said he went after the robbers during this week's heist because he "built this business. I work for years, open to close, every day."

Contact Christina Hall at:

chall@theblade.com

or 419-724-6007.



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