An investigation was under way Tuesday into a violent armed robbery in which a 68-year-old La Mesa liquor store clerk was pistol-whipped and struck on the top of the head with a glass bottle, police said.
Officers were called to Sierra Market at 3834 Massachusetts Ave. at 8:36 p.m. Monday, according to La Mesa police Sgt. Bret Richards. Once there, officers found the store clerk bleeding from his head, the sergeant said in a statement.
The clerk told investigators that a man armed with a handgun walked behind the sales counter where the store clerk was standing, and a struggle ensued during which the robber used his gun to hit the clerk on his head, Richards said.
The robber then demanded the clerk open the store's cash register, and the clerk complied. As the robber filled his pockets with an undisclosed amount of cash, the clerk grabbed a liquor bottle and struck the robber on the back of his head, Richards said, noting the blow sparked a second struggle between the two men.
The struggle moved from behind the counter to the store aisles. Richards said the robber ran out of the store after he grabbed a liquor bottle and struck the clerk in the head.
Paramedics took the clerk to an area hospital to treat his injuries, which included multiple contusions and lacerations, Richards said.
"The handgun turned out to be an Airsoft handgun and it was recovered at the scene," Richards said, adding that the robber fled in a light blue mini van.
Police described him as black, 30-35 years old and about 6'-2", with a heavy build and goatee. He was last seen wearing a dark hooded sweatshirt with white lettering on the front, and a curly blond wig, Richards said.
Anyone with information about the robbery was asked to call La Mesa police at (619) 667-1400 or San Diego County Crime Stoppers' anonymous tip line at (888) 580-TIPS.
–City News Service