David Chanda, of Raja’s Asian supermarket (with wife Shelly and daughter Elishka) is shaken, but undeterred, after two men tried to rob his store with plastic guns.
David Chanda, of Raja’s Asian supermarket (with wife Shelly and daughter Elishka) is shaken, but undeterred, after two men tried to rob his store with plastic guns. John Mccutcheon

Threat foils robbery

A Tewantin store owner has used a baseball bat to strike out two robbers who menaced him with what turned out to be plastic water pistols on Tuesday night.

The male would-be bandits fled empty handed after David Chanda, of Raja’s Asian supermarket, bluffed them by telling them the police were outside, giving one a tap on the arm for good measure as they turned and fled.

But police advise that personal safety is paramount and directions by offenders should be obeyed.

“Personal safety is paramount, it is more important than the money,” Noosa CIB Senior Constable Chad Kereama said.

The strain of having a gun pointed at his head showed on the face of the Tewantin store owner as he described the traumatic experience.

Forty-seven year-old Mr Chanda has run his business on Hilton Terrace for 13 years, and although there have been about eight break-ins, this was the first robbery.

But he said he always had the baseball at hand.

“You have to have it if you are in this situation,” he said.

Mr Chanda, who appeared shaken but undeterred, said he recognised the two men who entered the store with guns at 8pm, after they had visited the store earlier in the day and questioned him about closing time.

“When they saw me they held up guns and demanded cash,” he said.

His immediate fear turned to disdain when he identified the guns as fakes.

“I turned my head and looked outside and said ‘look, there’s police’.”

Instantaneously, Mr Chanda lifted a solid baseball bat from behind the counter.

“As he turned his head I tapped him on the arm and they ran out,” he said.

Police are searching for two men, one described as being of Islander appearance with frizzy black hair, 176cm, of a proportionate build and wearing a black top and shorts at the time.

The other offender is described as being of Caucasian appearance, 178cm with a chubby build, wearing a white t-shirt and maroon coloured football shorts.

If you have any information call crimestoppers on 1800 333 000.


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