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Army December 8, 2011
By Cfn Max Bree
A QUICK-thinking soldier took the sparkle out of
a would-be jewellery thief, tackling the accused as
he attempted to flee a crime scene in Brisbane on
Pte Andrew Fenech, 8/9RAR, was waiting for a
coffee at the Brookside Shopping Centre when he
heard screaming from a nearby jewellery store.
Pte Fenech said he looked around to see a woman
being tasered by an assailant who then fled the store
He chased down the alleged thief and was able to
catch and restrain him.
But the man didn't take kindly to being grabbed
from behind during the getaway. Pte Fenech said the
accused moved the taser behind his back and zapped
him in the stomach.
"At first it hurt but the second and third times I got
used to it," Pte Fenech said.
"I don't think he was expecting anyone to grab
A second man then came in to help Pte Fenech
wrestle the accused to the ground.
"We took him to the ground together," Pte Fenech
said. "Then I pinned him in an arm lock and pulled the
taser off him."
With the stolen jewellery now scattered all over the
ground, Pte Fenech and the other man held the accused
while an off-duty policeman called for back-up.
Pte Fenech visited the shop assistant after she left
"She was ecstatic," he said. "She kept saying thank
Other soldiers from 8/9RAR's C Coy found the act
courageous, and rather amusing.
"They've been calling me superhero and laughing
their heads off," Pte Fenech said. "I don't think they're
ever going to forget it."
For Pte Fenech, chasing the accused down was just
a split-second decision with no time for deliberation.
"It had to be done I guess."
Crime stopper: Pte Andrew Fenech chased down a jewellery thief in a Brisbane shopping centre.
Jewellery thief thwarted
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