Police in Roseville, Mich., say a heroin addict attempted to steal a $179 battery-powered drill from a Home Depot and then stabbed the store’s loss prevention officer with a contaminated syringe when he was confronted.
Luckily, there was a customer carrying a concealed firearm nearby. The man reportedly drew his gun and ordered the suspect to drop the syringe.
Police arrested Joshua J. Silva, 26, shortly after the violent altercation on Monday night. He was charged with second-degree retail fraud and assault with intent to do great bodily harm, a felony. The suspect held in Macomb County Jail on $25,000 bond.
Police Chief James Berlin said the loss prevention officer attempted to stop Silva after he stuffed the battery-powered drill under his coat. He fought the employee to avoid arrest.
The Detroit Free Press has more:
During the fight in the parking lot, Silva pulled a concealed syringe from his jacket and used it as a weapon, swinging it around in a slashing motion, police said.
They said he was able to stab one of the officers several times with the contaminated needle. Berlin said the victim had more than five puncture wounds on the top of his hand.
A customer with a concealed pistol license saw the incident, pulled out his handgun and told the suspect to drop the syringe and get on the ground.
After being confronted by the armed customer, the suspect immediately stopped fighting and sat down, according to police. He managed to jump up and run away when he heard police coming, but was quickly apprehended.
The good Samaritan, who wished to remain anonymous, told police he believed the loss prevention officer could have been killed if he didn’t intervene.
Berlin said the syringe used by the suspect had some residue in it and will be tested by the Michigan State Police crime lab for communicable diseases that could have been transmitted to the loss prevention officer.
The police chief also said the citizen who intervened will be submitted for a citizen’s citation.