NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — An armed robbery in Queens was foiled by a risky move when two brothers fought off a woman who was pointing a gun at them.
The brothers spoke exclusively with CBS2’s Valerie Castro about that split decision to take action.
Disguised under a hooded sweatshirt, police sources say surveillance video exclusively obtained by CBS2 shows 39-year-old Rosa Rodriguez as she tries to rob a bodega on Liberty Avenue near 129th Street in Richmond Hill.
She found herself face to face with a pair of brothers who refused to let her get away.
“She was fighting like crazy,” Yahya Alsaidi said.
Yahya says he was in another area of the store when he saw the commotion on a surveillance monitor. He ran to help his 15-year-old brother who was struggling with Rodriguez.
“I asked him what happened and he said ‘she have a gun,’ then we start fighting and punching,” Yahya said, adding he was scared that he was going to die.
His younger brother, Asem, says it started when the woman walked up to the counter, pointed a gun at him, and demanded money.
He believed it wasn’t loaded and decided to lunge for the weapon but missed.
Then, the struggle began.
“I was taking her sweater off so I could show her face to the camera,” Asem said.
Big brother Yahya quickly stepped in and eventually forced the woman to drop the weapon, now tangled up in her sweatshirt.
All the while, Rodriguez kept yelling out.
“She was saying ‘I have kids, I did this for my kids, let me go, let me go’,” Yahya said. “So you’re doing this for your kids and you come to kill my brother and he’s 15-years-old.”
Yahya says he held her down until police arrived and she was arrested. As for his brother’s split decision to reach for the gun; “I was thinking he’s stupid what he did. He’s stupid. He’s lucky this time.”
Police sources say Rodriguez is suspected in at least three other similar holdups where she did get away with cash.