AN EX-SOLDIER grabbed a robber’s gun and pointed it at his head.
Antony Wolfe, 61, was alerted by a neighbour to a raid at a corner shop and ran from home to help.
He grabbed hold of the gun barrel with both hands and twisted it out of the grasp of robber James Gowland, before wrestling him to the floor with the aid of another member of the public.
To find out if the weapon was loaded, he pointed it at Gowland and asked him: ‘If I pulled this will it blow your head off?’
It turned out the gun was an imitation but Mr Wolfe had no idea of that when he went to intervene.
‘I was in the Army for a year when I was 18 and completed basic training,’ said the have-a-go hero. ‘It’s amazing to think that it kicked in to help me in the moment.
‘We had him pinned on the ground for seven minutes while waiting for police but it felt like forever. He was struggling at the start but we managed to suppress him.’
The shopkeeper, Jagan Kandaswamy, opened his till after Gowland threatened to shoot him in Swindon, Wiltshire.
The raider helped himself to cash and bottles of whisky before he was stopped on January 20 by Mr Wolfe, who became a teacher after leaving the army. Shelves were sent flying as they struggled.
Gowland, 31, who admitted robbery and possessing an imitation firearm, was jailed for two years and ten months.
He owed drug dealers money and was depressed after several bereavements, Swindon crown court heard.