Gas station customer fights off would-be carjacker - KCTV5

Gas station customer fights off would-be carjacker

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LEE'S SUMMIT, MO (KCTV) -

A terrified 7-Eleven clerk frantically called 911 and described to authorities the scene unfolding before her eyes.

A regular customer had pulled up about 3:15 a.m. Friday to pump gas. That's when a man brandishing a handgun approached in an attempt to steal the man's red, four-door sedan.

The suspect jumped into the driver's seat. The owner ran around to the passenger seat and jumped in.

As the suspect pumped the gas pedal, the vehicle's owner began struggling with the suspect and grabbed the steering wheel. The suspect threatened to shoot the victim, but he grabbed the gun, according to court documents.

During the struggle, one round was fired into the passenger side floorboard.

"(The victim) managed to take the hand gun from the suspect, striking the suspect two times in the forehead with the hand gun," according to court records. "(The victim) advised the suspect made comments that he did not want to go to jail and that he had a child on the way."

The vehicle crashed into a ditch across the street from the store, which is at 909 SW Oldman Pkwy.

The suspect then fled to a waiting getaway vehicle, which police pursued but were unable to catch initially. 

The victim, who was not injured, later helped identify the suspect. 

"It was scary to watch," the clerk, Jessica Trussell, said.

Robert J. Rule, 19, of Lee's Summit faces four felony charges including first-degree robbery and attempted first-degree robbery. Prosecutors sought a $100,000 cash bond.

In addition to the attempted carjacking, Rule is accused of robbing another man of his vehicle. Rule told police that he was breaking into cars in the Lee's Summit area with two other men. He said they fled from police and wound up at Centerpoint Medical Center in Independence with the goal of stealing another vehicle, but he managed to steal a gun from a vehicle in the parking lot, according to court records.

While in Independence, Rule said he lost track of his comrades. He said he got a ride from a group of guys who took him to a service station where he then carjacked them by threatening them with the stolen gun, according to court records.

He allegedly told detectives he went to the 7-Eleven planning to rob it. After he was arrested following a short foot chase, police said Rule repeatedly told them that he had ruined his and his family's lives.

"He felt like he had no other choice but to steal things for money," according to court records. "He admitted that his goal that night was to steal things and vehicles so he could sell them for money."

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