Two attempt to rob store, one uses bear spray

The owner of the market in the 31700 block of South Fraser Way scares off the culprits.

A quick-thinking store owner prevented two robbers from making off with any cash or goods on Monday morning in Abbotsford.

But before they fled, one of the culprits deployed bear spray.

Const. Ian MacDonald said the incident occurred at about 9:15 a.m. at a convenience store/market in the 31700 block of South Fraser Way.

One man, described as about 5′ 2″, made his way into the store, while the other, about 6′ 2″, remained at the entrance as a look-out, inadvertently causing the store’s door chime to sound.

The owner asked the taller man to either come all the way into the store or to leave, just as the other suspect pulled out a can of bear spray and said they were robbing the store.

The owner immediately crouched down behind the counter, grabbed the phone and called 911.

The shorter man then deployed the bear spray, and the men fled without taking anything.

MacDonald credited the man’s quick actions with scaring off the thieves. He said the bear spray was thick in the air when officers arrived, but was cleared with ventilation.

“Our members were hacking and gagging away.”

The store owner did not see whether the men got away on foot or in a vehicle. They were both wearing dark clothing, and are described as being possibly South Asian.

Anyone with information is asked to call the Abbotsford Police Department at 604-859-5225.