A hero with a gun came to the aid of two other good Samaritans in capturing a violent would-be armed robber in Seminole, Florida Sunday. Donald Rush, 40, visiting from Pennsylvania, accessed his gun and ended the mayhem without firing a shot.
Sometimes bad guys, looking down the muzzle of a firearm, have just never had things explained to them like that before. In this case, police say Bobby Martin Watson, 49, of St. Petersburg ended his violent struggle, but not until after he’d stabbed two other unarmed good Samaritans moments before.
It began with the original victim sitting in her Toyota Highlander in a Publix parking lot. Unaware of her surroundings, Watson approached, intent on taking her purse. She fought the thief and Watson allegedly stabbed her a couple of times for her troubles.
That’s when Christopher McMann tried to help. Watson stabbed him, and then Travis Jones too, as he confronted Watson.
That’s when our Gun Hero of the Day showed up. Armed.
Seeing the look of a determined gun owner and staring down a dark muzzle, Mr. Watson elected to surrender and wait for police to arrive. Nice work, Mr. Rush – and the good Samaritans.
McMann and Jones were able to tackle Watson, but deputies say Jones was stabbed in the abdomen during the struggle that ensued. Rush stepped in at that point, disarmed Watson and held him at gunpoint until deputies arrived, the agency said.
Lynn, McMann and Jones all suffered non-life-threatening injuries and were taken to a local hospital for treatment.
As for Watson, he was booked into the Pinellas County Jail after receiving medical clearance. He faces armed robbery and three counts of aggravated battery with a deadly weapon charges. Watson remained in jail Monday.
The local ABC station covered it in brief, complete with some dramatic footage.
Taking on a violent suspect armed with a knife empty-handed requires a healthy dose of bravery – or foolishness. In this case, one of the heroes talked with WFLA.
When News Channel 8 spoke with Jones, he told us the doctor said the knife’s five-inch blade landed just millimeters from his heart.
He said he hadn’t realized Watson stabbed him until deputies told him he was bleeding.
Jones said he was the only person who got the suspect down on the ground and that it was actually Jones who disarmed Watson by knocking the knife out of his hands.
Thankfully the heroic Mr. Jones’ family still has him. It could have turned out much differently if it had not been for a good guy with a gun.