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Muslim Points Rifle at Would-be Customer

Posted by on Dec. 5, 2009 at 6:02 PM
  • 19 Replies

Now that I have your attention, please read the rest of the story.

Storeowner: A little compassion changed would-be robber's life

By Evan Buxbaum, CNN
December 3, 2009 10:50 p.m. EST

New York (CNN) -- Six months ago, a Long Island convenience store owner turned a would-be robbery into an act of compassion. On Wednesday, the shoplifter made amends with a $50 bill and a thank you letter for saving him from a life of crime.

The story began in May 2009, when Mohammad Sohail of Shirley, New York, was closing his Shirley Express convenience store one night. Security camera footage from that evening shows a man wielding a baseball bat barging into the store and demanding money.

Sohail had a rifle ready and quickly aimed it directly in the robber's face, forcing the man to drop the bat and lay on the ground. Unbeknownst to the man, Sohail never loads his gun.

According to Sohail, the man immediately started to plead with him, tearfully saying, "I'm sorry, I have no food. I have no money. My whole family is hungry. Don't call the police. Don't shoot me."

"When I see him starting crying [those] things, I really feel bad for him," said Sohail. "I say, oh man, this is something different."

Sohail made the man pledge never to rob anybody ever again, then gave the man $40 and a loaf bread. Sohail, who is from Pakistan, said the man then wanted to be a Muslim like him, so he recited an Islamic oath and gave the would-be robber the name Nawaz Sharif Zardari.

Sohail went to get some milk, but when he returned the man had fled with the money and food.

Video: Robber returns a favor

Both Mohammad Sohail and Suffolk County Police have no idea who the man is. After the May incident, Sohail explained that he will "absolutely not" be pressing charges, though police are still investigating the case.

Over the past six months, Sohail's story of sympathy and kindness has inspired many across the country.

The Shirley Express store has received numerous letters of admiration.

"No person has ever moved my spirit the way you did. From your biggest admirer," one letter says. "Great men are capable of great acts. You are a great American," another reads.

He has also received several checks with such messages for "a couple hundred dollars" in total, says Sohail. He has made a point to give this money "to the people" by offering free bagels, rolls and coffee in his store every night after 9 o'clock.

But the envelope that arrived on Wednesday came as a surprise. Postmarked November 11 without a return address, it enclosed a $50 bill and a note apparently from the would-be robber.

The typed letter begins, "You change My Life (sic)," and goes on to say that the man is sorry for his actions six months ago.

"At the time I had No money No food on my table No Job, and nothing for my family. I know that it was wrong, but I had know (sic) choice. I needed to feed My family. When You had That gun to my head I was 100% that I was going to die," reads the letter.

The letter says Sohail's acts inspired him to become a "True Muslim" and that his life has changed dramatically.

"I'm very happy that somebody got to change his life," Sohail said. "If he is a maybe criminal, maybe is not anymore. So now he is a good person in this community and I'm very glad for that. He's staying out of trouble, he's not in a jail, he's taking care of his family."

http://www.cnn.com/2009/US/12/03/convenience.store.compassion/index.html

by on Dec. 5, 2009 at 6:02 PM
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Replies (1-10):
Raintree
by Ruby Member on Dec. 5, 2009 at 6:07 PM

Sweet!

That's all I've got, really. I heard about this story when it first happened, and had forgotten. Neat that he got a further letter and money back from the man.

stormcris
by Christy on Dec. 5, 2009 at 6:16 PM

WOW. I thought the first story was impressive but the second half is tremendous. Thanks for posting.

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muslimah
by on Dec. 5, 2009 at 6:30 PM

This reminds me of the early days of Islam when the Muslims were in battle with the Jahiliyah and the idol worshippers.

 Just as prescribed by Allah, when one puts down their weapon and surrenders they are to to given mercy and just as this man came to embrace Islam after seeing Allah's mercy so did many of the of the idol worshippers in the Battle of Badr in 624.

This brother is truly a practicing Muslim and may Allah reward him for his actions.

  Free Palestine

Della529
by Matlock on Dec. 5, 2009 at 6:36 PM


Quoting muslimah:

This reminds me of the early days of Islam when the Muslims were in battle with the Jahiliyah and the idol worshippers.

 Just as prescribed by Allah, when one puts down their weapon and surrenders they are to to given mercy and just as this man came to embrace Islam after seeing Allah's mercy so did many of the of the idol worshippers in the Battle of Badr in 624.

This brother is truly a practicing Muslim and may Allah reward him for his actions.

Ahhh, and thus the point of the post.  Thank you, Muslimah.

Della529
by Matlock on Dec. 5, 2009 at 6:38 PM

Rain and Storm, I thought the result deserved mention.  Thanks!

Talee
by Gold Member on Dec. 5, 2009 at 6:48 PM

This is so heart touching. I feel there are very few people on this planet who would be so kind as to just understand as this man has. I am near tears reading this. We need more of this in our world. How absolutely wonderful.

roskill-girl
by Member on Dec. 5, 2009 at 6:48 PM

 

Great story :)

When I read the title I thought here we go again...but I was pleasantly surprised  - no muslim bashing in this thread :)

Talee
by Gold Member on Dec. 5, 2009 at 6:51 PM


Quoting muslimah:

This reminds me of the early days of Islam when the Muslims were in battle with the Jahiliyah and the idol worshippers.

 Just as prescribed by Allah, when one puts down their weapon and surrenders they are to to given mercy and just as this man came to embrace Islam after seeing Allah's mercy so did many of the of the idol worshippers in the Battle of Badr in 624.

This brother is truly a practicing Muslim and may Allah reward him for his actions.

I am not Muslim..but I am very happy to see this kind of love and kindness expressed to all from the Muslim faith. It gives me so much hope, not for myself...but for people who doubt. If that makes any sense at all.


 

sarahj3
by Member on Dec. 5, 2009 at 6:57 PM

What a beautiful story! Thank you for posting...This is the type of Muslim(s) I know/have known.  Very kind and generous! : )

BMW0508
by on Dec. 5, 2009 at 7:01 PM

 What a wonderful story. There is still hope for this world when there are people out there like that. This just shows that people no matter what race or nationality CAN be good. It's not just one group or the other that causes problems, its all of them! Way to go Sohail!!

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