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HomeNewsPeterborough Police Chief Defends Officers Who Charged Store Clerk After Robbery

Peterborough Police Chief Defends Officers Who Charged Store Clerk After Robbery

PETERBOROUGH-Peterborough Police Chief Stu Betts is defending his officers after charges were laid against a store clerk who fought back after a robbery.

“I would not normally release a message of this kind, but the commentary that has taken place following our media release today, in relation to a store clerk also being charged following an attempted robbery, is unfair to the men and women of my Organization – they are doing great work in our community,” said Betts in a statement released on Tuesday evening.


At approximately 2:30am on January 5, 2024, officers were called to the convenience store in the King Street and Bethune Street area. Upon arrival, officers were told that the male clerk was helping a customer when a second man came into the store demanding money and brandishing a baseball bat.  Police say a struggle ensued and the clerk was struck with the bat before grabbing the bat away from the suspect who then fled the store. The clerk followed the suspect out of the store and allegedly struck him several times with the baseball bat on the sidewalk.

The suspect suffered head injuries and is in a Toronto hospital receiving treatment. The 22-year-old clerk was treated at the scene by EMS.

As a result of the investigation,

A warrant for arrest was issued for the 37-year-old male suspect for robbery, assault with a weapon and possession of a weapon.

The 22-year-old clerk from Peterborough was also arrested and charged with:

  • Aggravated Assault

Some residents took to social media and expressed anger and frustration with police charging the store clerk.


“Why did the clerk get charged?. We should just stop calling you guys and do it ourselves if you charge us for defending ourselves. What a joke” said Nunya Bidness on X.

“You guys are a joke, arresting and charging the store owner.” said another.

“Allow the facts of the case to guide your commentary and opinion, not your reaction to a headline.” said Betts, who has been Chief for just over a year.  “I have every confidence in my staff. You may not like the police. You may not like my Police Organization in particular. I can’t change or comment on what you believe may or may not have been done in the past – I wasn’t a part of the past, I am the present. This is not about politics – politics have nothing to do with the facts. This is not about race – as some have suggested. This is not about the perception that criminals go free while victims of crime are penalized – this is about the law.” read the statement in part.

The incident made headlines across the province with the story being picked up by multiple news outlets.


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Pamela Vanmeer
Pamela Vanmeerhttps://www.kawartha411.ca/
Pamela VanMeer is a two time winner of the prestigious Radio Television Digital News Association (RTDNA) Award. Her investigative reports on abuse in Long Term Care Homes garnered international attention for the issue and won the Ron Laidlaw Award. She is a former reporter and anchor at CHEX News, now Global Peterborough and helped launch the New CHEX Daily, a daily half hour talk show. While at CHCH News in Hamilton she covered some of the biggest news stories of the day.

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