Have-a-go hero reveals how he foiled robbery

Retired Albanian police officer Rremzi Skepi was the hero who tackled a gang during a robbery at Michael Jones Jewellers in Banbury. Pictures: OX54545 Richard Cave

The injury to his leg after he was hit by one of the raiders.

First published in News

A HAVE-A-GO hero who rugby-tackled a robber in a busy shopping street last night described how he pinned the suspect to the ground.

Former police officer Rremzi Skepi picked up a metal sign and hurled it at one of the suspects before being knocked down by another on a motorbike.

But he managed to jump up, tackle the robber and pin him to the ground – keeping him there for seven minutes until police arrived.

Mr Skepi, who is Albanian, was one of the first on the scene after Michael Jones Jewellers in Banbury was raided on Tuesday, September 11.

The 55-year-old was in Lloyds Bank when he heard a commotion outside and saw people running away in fright.

At first, the Trousdale Bakery Company employee, who speaks little English, didn’t realise the jewellers in Banbury High Street was being raided.

But he leapt into action when he heard women and children screaming and saw suspects on motorbikes.

Speaking through interpreter Xhetan Bushi, of Bar Roma in Cowley Road, Oxford, Mr Skepi said: “They were scaring women and children with their wild revving.

“When I was walking by to see what was happening one of the motorbike riders swore at me and said ‘I’m going to kill you’.”

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Mr Skepi said he then picked up a metal A-board from a nearby shop and hurled it at one of the riders, hitting him on the helmet and causing his motorbike to swerve.

At that point a second motorbike struck Mr Skepi, causing him to fall to the floor.

It was only then he realised the jewellery shop was being raided.

Then, as the second motorcycle rider tried to escape, he fell off his bike.

Former Albanian police officer Mr Skepi, who was in the force for 12 years, struggled to his feet and jumped on the man, pinning him down.

Mr Skepi, who has lived in Banbury for eight years, added: “I feared for my life as I was the only one who was holding him down.”

The other suspects then fled the scene.

A bag containing some of the stolen items was recovered at the scene A member of the public took Mr Skepi to hospital, where doctors found he had suffered a fractured left leg after being struck by the bike.

He is now back at home but is using crutches to help get around.

Jimmy Stringer of Maryland Walk, Popham Street, Islington, appeared at Oxford Crown Court last Monday and admitted one count of robbery.

The 23-year-old was remanded in custody and told to expect a lengthy prison term when he is sentenced on November 9.

Three other men were arrested after the raid and will answer police bail on October 21.

Comments (7)

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11:59am Wed 26 Sep 12

## Nonny Mouse ## says...

Mr.Skepi was later successfully sued by the raider's family - claiming that a high level of mental distress had been caused.
Mr.Skepi was later successfully sued by the raider's family - claiming that a high level of mental distress had been caused. ## Nonny Mouse ##
  • Score: -1

12:24pm Wed 26 Sep 12

Dilligaf2010 says...

Good for him, although as a former police officer in Albania, this incident was merely a walk in the park for him.
I would however question why, after having lived in Banbury for 8 years, he still speaks little English, I'm not against people coming to the country for a better life, but I wish they'd make for of an effort to integrate into society.
And before anybody says it, as an adult, I lived in Germany for 3 years, on 2 separate occasions, and some of the locals thought I was actually German.
Good for him, although as a former police officer in Albania, this incident was merely a walk in the park for him. I would however question why, after having lived in Banbury for 8 years, he still speaks little English, I'm not against people coming to the country for a better life, but I wish they'd make for of an effort to integrate into society. And before anybody says it, as an adult, I lived in Germany for 3 years, on 2 separate occasions, and some of the locals thought I was actually German. Dilligaf2010
  • Score: 0

12:49pm Wed 26 Sep 12

Myron Blatz says...

Yes, the Police and other internal security authorities in Albania used to have a reputation for a tough and 'no-nonsense' approach to criminals, anti-social behaviour and anyone who opposed the Communist State - the sort of approach which some people in the UK might laud, but which the British Police would be hauled over the proverbial 'coals' if they tried to enforce. I mean, if it was up some some folk, we'd bring back hanging, use the birch on wayward teenagers, and probably re-invent transportation to the penal colony of Australia. Hmm, now there's a thought.
Yes, the Police and other internal security authorities in Albania used to have a reputation for a tough and 'no-nonsense' approach to criminals, anti-social behaviour and anyone who opposed the Communist State - the sort of approach which some people in the UK might laud, but which the British Police would be hauled over the proverbial 'coals' if they tried to enforce. I mean, if it was up some some folk, we'd bring back hanging, use the birch on wayward teenagers, and probably re-invent transportation to the penal colony of Australia. Hmm, now there's a thought. Myron Blatz
  • Score: 0

1:26pm Wed 26 Sep 12

Dilligaf2010 says...

Myron Blatz wrote:
Yes, the Police and other internal security authorities in Albania used to have a reputation for a tough and 'no-nonsense' approach to criminals, anti-social behaviour and anyone who opposed the Communist State - the sort of approach which some people in the UK might laud, but which the British Police would be hauled over the proverbial 'coals' if they tried to enforce. I mean, if it was up some some folk, we'd bring back hanging, use the birch on wayward teenagers, and probably re-invent transportation to the penal colony of Australia. Hmm, now there's a thought.
I somewhat agree with your thought, but Australia? That wouldn't be a punishment, surely Siberia would be more suitable.
[quote][p][bold]Myron Blatz[/bold] wrote: Yes, the Police and other internal security authorities in Albania used to have a reputation for a tough and 'no-nonsense' approach to criminals, anti-social behaviour and anyone who opposed the Communist State - the sort of approach which some people in the UK might laud, but which the British Police would be hauled over the proverbial 'coals' if they tried to enforce. I mean, if it was up some some folk, we'd bring back hanging, use the birch on wayward teenagers, and probably re-invent transportation to the penal colony of Australia. Hmm, now there's a thought.[/p][/quote]I somewhat agree with your thought, but Australia? That wouldn't be a punishment, surely Siberia would be more suitable. Dilligaf2010
  • Score: 0

2:03pm Wed 26 Sep 12

eatmygoal says...

Dilligaf2010 wrote:
Good for him, although as a former police officer in Albania, this incident was merely a walk in the park for him.
I would however question why, after having lived in Banbury for 8 years, he still speaks little English, I'm not against people coming to the country for a better life, but I wish they'd make for of an effort to integrate into society.
And before anybody says it, as an adult, I lived in Germany for 3 years, on 2 separate occasions, and some of the locals thought I was actually German.
You know what? If someone is willing to put himself at risk, get injured for his troubles and bring a thief to justice for the good of society, I don't mind what language he speaks. Thanks Mr Skepi, a proper hero.
[quote][p][bold]Dilligaf2010[/bold] wrote: Good for him, although as a former police officer in Albania, this incident was merely a walk in the park for him. I would however question why, after having lived in Banbury for 8 years, he still speaks little English, I'm not against people coming to the country for a better life, but I wish they'd make for of an effort to integrate into society. And before anybody says it, as an adult, I lived in Germany for 3 years, on 2 separate occasions, and some of the locals thought I was actually German.[/p][/quote]You know what? If someone is willing to put himself at risk, get injured for his troubles and bring a thief to justice for the good of society, I don't mind what language he speaks. Thanks Mr Skepi, a proper hero. eatmygoal
  • Score: 2

3:10pm Wed 26 Sep 12

wrongly parked says...

Well done Mr Skepi!
It is an embarrasment on the local police officers when a 55 year old member of the public has to do their work!!
Are the loal police officers going to give him some of their wages?
Well done Mr Skepi! It is an embarrasment on the local police officers when a 55 year old member of the public has to do their work!! Are the loal police officers going to give him some of their wages? wrongly parked
  • Score: 1

4:08pm Wed 26 Sep 12

dant40 says...

Well done Mr Skepi on the good work you did.. But why have your photo on the papers as an hero. I would be worried as you dont have any clue who this gang was, But i'm sure the police will give you and your family protection if needed (NOT).

Did the shop owner let you have a lucky dip into the bag what was at the scene for your good work.
Well done Mr Skepi on the good work you did.. But why have your photo on the papers as an hero. I would be worried as you dont have any clue who this gang was, But i'm sure the police will give you and your family protection if needed (NOT). Did the shop owner let you have a lucky dip into the bag what was at the scene for your good work. dant40
  • Score: 0

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