Man walks in store seconds after robbery and finds crook assaulting store clerk

A man walked into a convenience store and his timing may have saved a woman's life. The store had just been robbed and the crook was still inside assaulting the store clerk.

It was early in the morning and Kandice Harp was working alone at the Kangaroo Express on Glade Road in Acworth, when she say an armed man walked in and demanded cash. "He asked me for all the money and I opened my drawer and gave him what he wanted," said Harp. 

Harp says the crook then pushed her into the office and started choking her. Harp says she was terrified and could barely breath.  She says she tried to grab the man's gun.  "I had one hand loose and I pulled his gun out of his pocket and that's when he started choking me even more.  I tried to shoot him with it and it wouldn't shoot," said Harp. 

At that moment, 66 year old Richard Atkins walked in the store. "I heard what I thought was a woman's voice saying 'help'," said Atkins. He says he opened the door to the office and saw a man choking a woman.  "I knew I was going to have to do something so I turned and swung at him, I can't even say for sure if I hit him or not, but I took at stab at it," said Atkins.

Atkins says the robber knocked him down and ran out of the store.  Authorities say the crook got away with some cash.  Harp was left with some bruises on her neck and body, but thanks to the perfect timing of Richard Atkins, she'll be okay.  "I was just at the wrong place at the right time," said Atkins. 

Harp says she doesn't want to think about what would have happened if Atkins had not walked in. "Thank God above that he came in," said Harp.

Bartow County Sheriff's Office investigators say they're reviewing surveillance video and are working some active leads in the case.