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Shop worker tackles robber

MY HERO Shop assistant Ellen Whitakerwith Candyman owner Dennis Fisher. (D524C349)

MY HERO Shop assistant Ellen Whitakerwith Candyman owner Dennis Fisher. (D524C349)

A 66-year-old shop worker has been hailed a hero after tackling a would-be robber who was armed with a knife.

Ellen Whitaker, who works at Candyman in Batley Shopping Centre, restrained the teenager and threw him out of the shop after he threatened her and demanded cash.

Mrs Whitaker, who has worked at the Alfreds’ Way newsagent for six years, said she wanted to protect herself and store owner Dennis Fisher, who was working with her at the time of the attempted robbery on November 30.

“It’s just instinct,” Mrs Whitaker said. “My first thought was just ‘get him out’, for the safety of me and Mr Fisher.”

She grabbed the youth by his collar and twisted his arm behind his back before forcing him out of the store.

He ran off but Mrs Whitaker called the police, who arrested and charged a suspect later that day.

Mr Fisher ran another branch of Candyman in Morley for 31 years, but closed the store in September 2010.

He used to help organise Morley Carnival and was chairman of the governing body at Woodkirk Academy until earlier this year.

The school also named its new sixth form centre in his honour in October.

“The hero was definitely Ellen,” he said. “The way she pushed him right out of the shop into the arcade with no harm to herself.”

Mrs Whitaker added: “I just did what I had to do. It’s a crime, isn’t it?

“There was no way he was going to get away with it.”

Police have charged a 15-year-old boy from Batley with attempted robbery and possession of a bladed article.

 

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