ROSEVILLE (CBS13) — Police said a convenience store clerk who thought he was helping a customer ended up fending off a machete attack. The whole incident was caught on surveillance video.

Roseville Police are trying to track down the suspect who allegedly stole from the store and broke into someone’s car around 9 p.m. Wednesday. The clerks at the Stop and Shop off Cirby Way said the suspect didn’t have enough money to pay for his items.

Surveillance video shows the suspect getting aggressive, then reaching into his pants and pulling out a machete. The clerk dashed to get a phone and called the police. That’s when things really got scary. The suspect started bashing the plexiglass with the machete.

“Attacks like this, especially in convenience stores, are very uncommon,” said Rob Baquera, the public information officer at Roseville police.

What shields the clerk from coronavirus, also ended up shielding him from his attacker.

“We definitely believe the individual is armed and dangerous,” said Baquera.

Roseville Police identified the suspect as John Bontemps. He’s known to police and wanted for questioning about this crime and others.

“Oh my gosh I would not have stayed as calm as he did,” said Katie Stackhouse.

Stackhouse couldn’t believe how well the clerk kept his cool in the face of a deadly weapon. She works at the aquarium shop next door and is a frequent customer at the stop and shop. She said she’s sad to see this happen to her work neighbors, but thankful a simple defense against coronavirus did so much more.

“He could have easily come over the counter if that wasn’t there so I’m glad there was the extra bit of protection,” Stackhouse said.

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Katie says this shopping area doesn’t usually see this kind of violence.

“I’m really glad that everyone’s safe and no one got hurt, that there wasn’t any major damage to the business and stuff,” she said.

Roseville Police are asking people to call them if you recognize the suspect, but don’t approach him. They believe he is armed and dangerous.


By Kelley Wheeler

Kelley Wheeler is a Metro reporter covering political issues and general assignments. A second-generation journalist, worked with all major news outlet, she holds a vast expeirience. Kelley is a graduate of USC with degrees in journalism and English literature. She is a recipient of Yale’s Poynter Fellowship in Journalism.

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