Shut up, chill out and give them what they want. That’s the advice those who consider civilians too ill-trained and inept to be trusted with the means of armed self defense offer up to anyone with the temerity to ask what they’re expected to do if they find themselves staring down the barrel of a gun some day. And despite the best efforts of the dedicated gun grabbers in our northern suburbs, there are still some Canadians who don’t think much of that advice. Carl Fraser, a Torontonian, is apparently one of them . . .
Carl was in TD Canada Trust bank in West Toronto yesterday when – against all odds – two armed hold-up men announced their intention to make a withdrawal.
The robbers — one armed with a semi-automatic handgun, the other brandishing a rifle — stormed into the bank shortly after it opened at noon at the corner of St. Clair Ave. W. and Mould Ave., near Runnymede Rd. Five or six customers were in the bank.
Noon? They jumped over the counter, grabbed some cash — and, apparently, some dye packs — and ordered everyone on the floor.
Customer Jose Santos, 51, was in the bank manager’s office with his 17-year-old son and wife when the robbers invaded. “I was very scared because he was waving the gun at everybody,” Santos said.
That’s when Fraser confronted the two Dillingers, telling them he didn’t believe their guns were real.
“He basically looked right down the barrel of the gun and told the robber he didn’t have the guts to shoot him,” said Rick, another customer who was too frightened to give his last name. “He’s just one of those guys that wasn’t going to take s— from anybody. It was unbelievable.”
Then he jumped one of them.
As the two wrestled, the robber allegedly fired his handgun and the bullet hit a 22-year-old female bank employee in the leg, according to Earl and the customer named Rick, who was standing next to Fraser when he challenged the robbers. “I was focused on staying out of the line of fire,” said Rick, 45.
The robbers, seeing their plan quickly going south, beat feet.
Incredibly, Fraser who earlier challenged the thieves chased after the armed men, confronting them in the parking lot. He again struggled with the robber with the handgun, who then allegedly shot him in the stomach, Earl said.
Thankfully, Fraser’s apparently going to survive following surgery to reduce his sudden increased lead intake problem.
“These people are very armed and very dangerous,” said (Toronto PD Staff Inspector Mike) Earl, who warned residents not to approach them if spotted.
Got that Canucks? They’re not just armed. They’re very armed. And here it comes:
Earl made clear that confronting armed bank robbers is never a smart thing to do. “Cooperate with the robbers because it’s the money that they’re after,” he told reporters while standing outside of the bank. “We advise the banking industry, employees and customers … to just turn your money over.”
You didn’t think he’d let a chance to pass that on go by, didja?
TD spokesperson Mohammed Nakhooda wouldn’t say how much money the robbers got away with. “We have extremely robust security systems in place,” he said. “Clearly this is an unfortunate incident and situation and we’re going to be working very closely with the police on this investigation.”
Apparently not robust enough, Mohammed. Maybe he can tell his clients how they intend to stop the next pair who decide to waltz into one of their banks with guns that are illegal in Canada to commit a crime that’s also illegal in Canada.
“They did get away with some money,” Earl said. “It’s called a takeover style robbery. They just barged right into the bank. It was just a brazen, unbelievable act of cowardice.”
Perhaps the brazenness had something to do with the fact that the holdup men, operating in the Great White North, had zero expectation of being confronted by anyone with a gun. Just a thought.