A Mt. Juliet convenience store owner robbed at gunpoint Monday evening was charged after he apparently took the law in his own hands but targeted the wrong group of people.
Tennessee Highway Patrol troopers charged the owner of Nick’s Market, Ali Obeid Al Kaziah, 44, of Hendersonville, with three counts of felony reckless endangerment Monday.
Following an armed robbery at the store involving two black men and a third unknown suspect who fled the scene in a black Buick Rendezvous, Al Kaziah “took off looking for the suspect vehicle,” according to the trooper’s report.
The report said Al Kaziah was driving a 2002 Ford Explorer on Tanglewood Drive when he spotted a black 2003 GMC Envoy driven by Craighton Paulson, 18, of Mt. Juliet. David Brannam, 19, and Christopher Jones, 19, both of Mt. Juliet, were passengers in the Envoy.
Al Kaziah did a U-turn and got behind the Envoy, which was not the suspect vehicle in the robbery, the report said. Al Kaziah, thinking it was the suspect vehicle, then rammed the Envoy in the rear and left side, according to the trooper’s report.
The Envoy was forced off the roadway, and the three white men inside took off running in fear, the report said. No one was injured, and everyone involved was wearing seat belts.
The incident happened at 6:23 p.m. at 204 Tanglewood Drive just after Mt. Juliet officers were called to Nick’s Market at 13630 Lebanon Road at about 6:10 p.m. regarding the armed robbery.
Officers discovered two men robbed the store’s owner at gunpoint. No one was injured during the incident.
During the robbery, one of the suspects brandished a black handgun with a laser sight and demanded cash from the register, police said. A third suspect drove a getaway vehicle that was waiting nearby, and all three suspects fled with an undisclosed amount of cash, according to police.
Police remain searching for two black men in their late 20s or early 30s. One of the suspects was muscular build and was wearing a yellow shirt with blue jeans. The second suspect was heavy set and wore a gray T-shirt and blue jeans.
Neither witnesses nor surveillance video could provide a description of the getaway driver. The suspect vehicle was a dark-colored early 2000s-model Buick Rendezvous.
Al Kaziah was taken to Wilson County Jail, where he was released on $6,000 bond Tuesday just after midnight. A court date was set for Aug. 12.