Detective Matthew Parker, pointing to blood spatter on the carpet just inside the front door of The Hock Shop on Cobb Parkway in Marietta, traced the path of the three-minute attack. The struggle began about 15 feet from the store’s front door immediately after the victim opened the store Saturday and continued on through the back.
The attacker left the victim for dead, but dropped a knit cap and a woman’s-style wig, which were presumably part of a disguise. Police believe he didn’t take anything from the pawnshop.
On Monday, the storeowner, who has asked not be identified, remains in the Intensive Care Unit at WellStar Kennestone Hospital in Marietta. On Saturday night, doctors repaired the muscles damaged in the fight, stitched up his leg and removed a “little bit” of his colon. Family members say he is stable, but don’t know when he’ll get to come home.
“We’ve heard lots of different things, so we are not really sure,” one family member said.
Officer David Baldwin said they still don’t have any leads on the identity of the robber, but investigators have been canvassing the area for clues and speaking to area storeowners.
“All we know is that (the robber) ran out the door,” he said.
Baldwin said police are looking at the store’s surveillance camera footage to see if got a usable shot of the attacker. They will also have the victim meet with a GBI sketch artist as soon as he can.
The attacker is described as black male, in his 20s, 5-feet, 6-inches tall, thin build, between 130 and 150 pounds. He was last seen wearing the knit cap and wig, a dark blue hooded sweatshirt, and blue jeans.
Family members said the victim, who has owned the store for 19 years, isn’t an easy target.
“The assailant didn’t know what he had done,” said one relative, who also asked not be identified. “He didn’t know he’d pick the guy that would fight him.”
They said that this is the first time an assault has happened at the business.
“There have been minor things, break-ins … no one ever injured or hurt,” another relative said.
Michael Rechtman, who owns a nearby pawnshop, is all too familiar with the dangers that come with the business.
“It is dangerous, but no more dangerous than working in a convenience store,” said Rechtman, who opened Big Chicken Pawn less than a half-mile from The Hock Shop 10 years ago.
Rechtman’s shop was the site of an armed robbery three years ago.
“One of my employees was shot three or four times,” he said. “He’s made a full recovery and is actually still working with us.”
He hasn’t beefed up security since then, but does allow employees to carry guns if they want.
“I feel that these are just random incidents,” he said. “They pick your store, and there’s not much you can do about it and you hope that nobody’s hurt.”
Rechtman said he heard about the incident at The Hock Shop shortly after the stabbing.
“We actually heard from the pawn shop detective,” he said. “They called and asked us to review our surveillance video to see if any suspicious people had been in Saturday morning.”
Rechtman said the Hock Shop victim shouldn’t have been working alone.
“We always try to keep three people here, and we always have at least two,” he said. “If we had one, we would just close. One is just a huge security risk.”
Anyone with information about the attack is asked to contact Parker at (770) 794-5380.