PORTLAND -- Since the beginning of the week, would-be robbery victims at Portland businesses have fought back in three separate cases.
Surveillance cameras at a 76 gas station and food mart were rolling Thursday morning when an 18-year-old man walked in with what was believed to be a real gun. The video shows the man demanding cash from the clerks.
"They grabbed him, held him down and called police," said Lt. Robert King of the Portland Police Bureau.
The clerks then worked together to take down the suspect, who in the end was armed with a plastic gun.
Hours later, at a drugstore in Southwest Portland, a man claimed to be armed with a gun when he demanded drugs and money, and threatened to kill everyone in the store. The owner complied with the demands and gave the man several bottles of pills.
One witness sneaked out of the pharmacy and flagged down an officer in a patrol car. But the witness told the officer claimed to be off-duty, recommended calling 911 and drove away. The Portland Police Bureau was investigating.
Another witness told KGW police were on the scene soon after the suspect left the pharmacy.
"The man ran out the door, across the street diagonally, down the street, and a bunch of cops came," said witness Matt Bodall.
When officers arrived they were startled to see the suspect, later identified as 27-year-old Jocelin Olson, already on the ground. The owner of the drugstore had grabbed his own gun and chased after him.
"Downtown is getting crazier and crazier," Bodall added.
Another case was reported at a Burgerville earlier in the week. A man is accused of stealing cash from the register, only to be run down by employees.
"People have to be really careful," King said.
Authorities recommend calling 911 to report crimes, rather than taking matter into your own hands.
"There's real danger in fighting back when somebody has what could be a gun," added Lt. King.
At the end of the day, no amount of money or property is worth a life.