‘No Clue What’s Really Going On’: Norco Liquor Store Owner Says Politicians Turn A Blind Eye To Crime

[Screenshot/YouTube/Fox 11]

Nicole Silverio Media Reporter
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The elderly owner of Norco Market & Liquor in Norco, California, who fended off an armed man, called on political leaders to tackle the rising crime wave in the country.

Craig Cope, 80, shot at a masked male suspect who directly pointed an AR-15-style rifle at him before 3 a.m. Sunday. Cope hit the suspect in the arm with own his firearm, causing him to leave the store repeatedly shouting, “He shot my arm off.”

“There wasn’t much time to think about it,” Cope told Fox 11 host Gina Silva on Wednesday. “The guy pointed a gun directly at me, and it was him or me … I’m not going to give him the chance. I recognized the weapon, it’s a semi-automatic gun, fast when you pull the trigger. Maybe somebody converted it to automatic as the equivalent of a machine gun. I’m not going to let him get the first shot off at that point.”

Cope called on political leaders to “stand up” to the criminals throughout the country. He described meeting a person who burglarizes for a living, saying that some choose to be criminals and will continue their actions if not held accountable.

“There are people out there who are not the best of people,” he said. “There’s people who choose to be burglars, there’s people that choose to be armed robbers … These people continue to get let out now, it was really bad last year. Those people, the majority of them, are going to go right back to what they used to do. So the crime rate is escalating and will continue to escalate until they start putting people away that are doing the bad things.” (RELATED: Pharmacy Owner Opens Fire On Robbers Who Threatened Him) 

He further stated it would not have “done any good” for him to call the police since they “can’t get here that quick.”

“When you point that gun directly at me and you’re that close to me and I see what you’re carrying, I’m not waiting,” he continued, according to the interview.

After the shooting, the suspect returned to an SUV where he arrived with three other suspects and immediately drove off, according to Fox 11. Cope said he knew what to expect after he saw the vehicle parked on the side of the building to be out of sight and saw the suspect get out of the car with masks, gloves and a weapon.

Cope was rushed to the hospital after suffering a heart attack shortly after the incident. He told Silva he is not sure what caused it.

He accused politicians of turning a blind eye to the crime plaguing ordinary citizens and business owners on a daily basis.

“Put some pressure on the politicians,” he said. “They have no clue what’s really going on out here in the real world. I could start naming names, but there’s a whole lot of them that are creating major problems for business owners. But for local law enforcement, they’re creating problems for them, and I’m sure they go out and risk their lives taking people into custody just to see them get let out with no bail.”

Cope bought the store in 1976 and sold it after 19 years of ownership, according to the New York Post. He later repurchased it nearly seven years ago.

Police have identified three suspects as Justin Johnson, 22, Jamar Williams, 27, and Davon Broadus, 24, Fox 11 reported. The three were taken to Robert Presley Detention Center on charges of robbery and conspiracy on a $500,000 bond.