SANTA ROSA (KPIX 5) – Surveillance video shows the moment a plot to rob a Santa Rosa camera store backfired on three suspects.

Employees knew something was up when the robbers entered the store wearing backpacks backwards.

“He had a backpack on backwards so, he was grabbing lens and stuffing into his backpack,” Master Photographer Scott Manchester said.

“We all came out and managed to catch two of the guys before they could get away,” store owner Mike Paschka said.

It was a dramatic scene with bad guys fighting to escape, employees locking the door, calling police and slamming the robbers to the floor.

Manchester was on the phone with 911 when suddenly things took an unexpected turn.

“She was like, ‘Is it an armed robbery?’ I go, I don’t think so, then all of a sudden someone shouts gun, and I’m like, OK, armed robbery,” he said.

“During that struggle, there was actually a loaded 9mm handgun that one of the suspects dropped onto the floor one of the employees of the business,” Lt. Dan Marinick with the Santa Rosa Police Department said.

Employees say the gun may have fallen out of a backpack. It was quickly grabbed up and secured away from the robbers.

Paschka says it wasn’t easy holding them down.

“They gave us a hard time. I got bit. Bit me and punctured the skin, so…I’m lucky that my Tetanus is up to date,” said Paschka.

Of the three robbers, two are in jail and one got away, but police say they have good leads on the third.

Comments (2)
  1. Samuel A. Henley says:

    His name is Mike Paschke, not “Paschka” and did Manchester claim the title of “Master Photographer” for himself or did he buy it via mail order?