Teens rob store after clerk collapses from heart attack, police say

AUBURN, Washington -- Human decency took a back seat in Auburn Saturday when a man and two teens left a clerk suffering a heart attack to die, but not before helping themselves to the cash in the register and several other items inside the store, police said.

"It just blows my mind. It breaks our hearts," store manager Angela Sharapova told KOMO. "We can't believe that this happened."

Just after 5:30 p.m., a man and two teen boys went inside a Shell station. One of the teens grabbed a pepperoni stick and began to eat it, then grabbed a second one and handed to the other teen.

When the man who entered the store with the two teens went to pay for an item, the clerk tried to charge him for the two pepperoni sticks and an argument transpired, police said.

One of the teens gave the clerk $1, at which point the clerk became upset and went up to the teens to talk to them. After talking with the boys, video shows the clerk collapses to the floor from an apparent medical issue.

"He was saying 'This is wrong and you have to pay for it.' And at this point, he stepped back to behind the counter and that's when he collapsed," Sharapova said.

Instead of calling for help, one of the teens take back $1 bill before all three leave the store without paying. The two teens return a couple of times to steal cigarettes and take money from the cash register, police said, all while ignoring the unconscious clerk on the ground. Sharapova says the teens took $178.

"Going in and out three times. While he's on the floor in agony," Sharapova said.

Three minutes passed until another customer arrived and discovered the clerk on the ground.

"He asked the people that were outside at the pump to call 911; he rushed back inside and started performing CPR on the (clerk)," Sharapova said. "I don't know who these people are, but they are the true angels."

The clerk was taken to an Auburn hospital where he is still alive, but on life support.

"It just breaks our hearts," Sharapova said. "Now this guy is fighting for his life. He has three little children. He has a stay-at-home wife. We just pray to God that he makes it."

Auburn police is asking if you recognize the any of the three in the video to call their tip line at 253-288-7403.