Deli owner thwarts robbery, then gives thief money

NEW YORK Tue Jun 2, 2009 5:48pm EDT

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NEW YORK (Reuters) - An owner of a New York store thwarted a robbery only to take pity on the perpetrator, who claimed he could not feed his family, and gave the man $40 and a loaf of bread, a video of the incident showed.

A video posted on Tuesday by the Newsday newspaper on its website www.newsday.com showed a masked man wielding a bat as he entered a convenience store in Shirley, Long Island, just after midnight on May 21 and demanded money.

But when the store's owner, identified by the local Channel 12 TV station as Mohammad Sohail, pulled out a rifle, the masked man dropped to his knees and appeared to beg for forgiveness.

"He said 'I am sorry, I have no money, no job, my family is hungry,'" Sohail told the TV station. "Then I feel bad for him ... I take $40 for him."

Sohail said he was not planning to press charges.

(Reporting by Edith Honan; Editing by Michelle Nichols and John O'Callaghan)

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