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One terrifying, headline-making robbery was caught on surveillance cameras. Angi, a clerk in her family's check-cashing store, had just arrived at work when a robber burst in and began attacking her. The intruder was dressed from head to toe in yellow, so at first Angi says she thought that someone was playing a prank on her. "A yellow banana basically jumped over the counter," she says. "I thought, 'If someone was attacking me, he'd be wearing black.' Then, when the gun was in my face ... I realized, 'Nope, this is not a joke.'"

The robber tried to tie her up and cover her mouth with masking tape, but Angi fought back. Suddenly the phone rang and the robber attempted to yank the cord out of the wall—instead, he merely knocked the phone off the hook. Angi's husband, Cy, was on the other end of the phone. He listened helplessly to what was happening, then hung up and called 911. "It was the worst experience of my life to hear [her pleas for help] and to hear how scared she was," Cy remembers.

When the robber tried to take Angi down the hall into a bathroom, she says a red flag went up. "I remembered from watching [self-defense expert Sanford Strong on] Oprah a long time ago—'Don't ever let your attacker take you to that second location.' ... That's why I thank you," she tells Oprah. "'I thought, 'If he takes me to this bathroom, I'm not coming out.'"

Although the other offices in the building were empty that weekend, Angi convinced her attacker he'd be spotted by other tenants if he moved her to the bathroom. She then warned him that he'd likely be caught if he hung around any longer.
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FROM: The Bank-Robbing Dad and the Shocked Sons Who Turned Him In
Published on January 25, 2006

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