Hammer-wielding robber wasn’t expecting the answer he got to his question.

Shortly before one o’clock in the morning last Thursday, a man walked into the 7-Eleven branch in the Hizako neighborhood of Saitama City. He wasn’t there to buy a rice-flavored popsicle, though, but to rob the place.

The man approached the cash register, where a 56-year-old employee was working, and brandished a hammer of some sort. That might not seem like the most intimidating weapon, but since convenience store clerks in Japan don’t have weapons of their own stashed under the counter, any item capable of causing bodily harm usually gives robbers the advantage in confrontations.

▼ The 7-Elven branch where the incident took place

Unfortunately for the robber, though, he inadvertently gave up that advantage by giving the clerk an out from his demand.

“Give me your money,” the robber ordered the clerk, but then added “You’ve got money, right?”, to which the clerk replied:

“We don’t.”

It’s the kind of lie that seems like it should have seen through instantly. A lot of convenience store customers pay in cash, and even if the store had taken all of that day’s sales to the bank, there’s always at least some cash in the register so that the store can make change for cash-paying customers.

But either because of the robber’s heightened emotional state, or because of a lack of understanding of basic convenience store operations, he apparently truly believed that the store didn’t have a single bill. So when the clerk said the store had no cash, the robber turned around and ran off.

The police are now searching for the robber, who becomes the latest criminal to be thwarted by a convenience store clerk’s words.

Source: Saitama Shimbun via Yahoo! Japan News via Jin
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