FULLERTON (CBSLA.com) — A Good Samaritan took down a would-be “armed” bank robber Tuesday with his bare hands.
Herb Pearce said he was at a Chase Bank branch on Euclid Street and Orangethorpe Avenue in Fullerton when he noticed a man walk in quickly.
“(He said), ‘This is a robbery! This is a stick-up! I want all your money right now!’” said Pearce. “I’m looking at this guy, thinking, ‘Is this guy for real!?’”
Pearce said the man claimed to have a gun and pointed it right at him.
“He had his hand in the plastic bag,” he said.
Pearce then grabbed the suspect’s arm and called his bluff.
“Pow! I clocked him. He went back a little bit, he came at me again, I hit him again,” he said.
Police said 29-year-old suspect Jacob Williams was not armed and was arrested on the spot.
Officers said they don’t recommend customers hit a bank robber, but they can’t help but give Pearce credit.
“I have a feeling he would have completed a robbery, so in that effect, Mr. Pearce is a hero in that he stopped a crime,” said Sgt. Jeff Stuart of the Fullerton Police Department.
The termite exterminator broke and fractured his hand in several places taking the suspect down.
Although Pearce can’t afford health insurance and doesn’t know how he’ll pay to get his injury treated, he said he has no regrets.
“I’ll be darned if some junkie is gonna come off the street and take my (money). I put too many hours to get that…paycheck. So I’m not gonna let him take my money,” said Pearce.
CBS2’s Stacey Butler reported that Pearce asked Chase to pay his medical bills, but he said the bank refused because their insurance provider wouldn’t cover it.
A spokesperson for the bank, however, said they’re looking into it.