SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WGGB) – Springfield police are investigating an armed robbery Thursday morning. They say three suspects came into the Discount Smoke & Grocery just after 11pm Wednesday night, brandishing a handgun.
“I tried to stop them at the door but there were three of them so they forced their way inside and they had a gun and they hit me here on my shoulder,” Owner Nefees Niazi said.
The men tore through the store. When they couldn’t get in the cash register, Niazi says they grabbed a box of cigars and tried to flee. That’s when the fight continued outside. It left Niazi with cuts to his knee and toes.
“Again they hit me on the road so that’s why I got that stuff on my pants,” Niazi said.
The men fled down White Street. Niazi, meanwhile, closed his store for the rest of the night. He says he’s owned discount smoke and grocery for less than a year but has been in the convenience store business for 15 years. Thursday’s robbery was his first. He knows it’s always possible and is happy the way he handled Thursday’s struggle.
When asked if it was a bad idea for a robber to mess with his store, Niazi said:
“No, not a good idea… but it’s happened. This is everywhere. I’m not scared,” he said.
Springfield Police say they had officers in the neighborhood when the attack occurred and are still looking for three Hispanic men wanted in connection to the robbery. Niazi, meanwhile, says he’s bumping up security at the store. If you have any information on the robbery you’re asked to call Springfield Police.