Strathmore store clerk recovering after being beaten with bicycle chain

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A South Valley store clerk is at home recovering after a teen violently attacked him and stole alcohol from the store. (KFSN)

A South Valley store clerk is at home recovering after a teen violently attacked him and stole alcohol from the store.

The clerk wasn't comfortable speaking on camera with Action News, but he did say he's in a lot of pain and doesn't understand why a 15-year-old would brutally beat him, and then threaten his life.

One man we spoke to outside Strathmore Handy Market Thursday said he stopped by to get more information about the vicious attack. Because he comes here every day, he knows the victim well. He says the clerk has worked at the market for 18 years, and takes the time to be friendly with every customer who walks through its doors.

"He knows everybody here, everybody knows him, so it's just a real surprise to hear that he got attacked like that," the customer said.

Over the phone, the clerk told Action News the attack happened at around 5:30 Wednesday evening, in front of other clerks and customers. The suspect went behind the counter with a bicycle chain wrapped around his fist.

Within seconds, the teenager was pushing, punching, and kicking the clerk, who says he also slipped on the floor in the process. The teen took some alcohol from behind the counter. Before leaving, he reportedly said he would come back and shoot the clerk, and that nobody messes with Norteños.

"He's too friendly," said the longtime customer. "Why would you hit him?"

The Tulare County Sheriff's Office says they found the 15-year-old at his home, where he was taken into custody and brought to the juvenile detention facility.

The clerk says he has no broken bones, but is bruised and sore, especially around his ribs.

Loyal customers are hoping he recovers soon, and that the teen will change his ways, and turn his life around.

"I don't know, focus on doing the right thing instead of hurting people and just doing stupid things," said the customer.

The clerk says once he feels better, he'll return to work.

Related Topics:
tulare county sheriff's officetulare countyrobberyStrathmore
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