A Wesley Chapel man is accused of trying to steal $15,000 worth of bikes from a local store.
Unfortunately for the alleged thief, he didn’t notice the self-defense studio located next door.
According to the Pasco County Sheriff Office, the person who would rob that store is 30-year-old David Menzies.
Investigators said Menzies broke into the bike store Thursday evening. At the time, people were training next door at Hammerfist Krav Maga, a self-defense and jiu-jitsu studio.
“Immediately me and a couple of other guys, we went outside and we did notice the glass and there was some noise going on,” said Jason Carrio, co-owner of Hammerfist Krav Maga.
During those few minutes, deputies say Menzies was next door grabbing clothes and expensive bikes. That’s not all; investigators say he even took a Jeep for a test ride and parked it out back to load up.
When he was out back, Carrio and other instructors ran around to stop him.
“We started yelling to him, you know, ‘Hey, is that your stuff? Are those your bikes? What are you doing?’ ” said Carrio.
Carrio says Menzies kept loading the bikes even after the confrontation. Carrio says he told Menzies he called police. Menzies then said he’d wait in the car.
“I knew as soon as he got into that car he was going to try and take off and the car was running,” Carrio said.
So the self-defense instructor took matters into his own hands and took the suspect out of the car and held onto him with jiu-jitsu moves.
“I just reacted, to be quite honest with you,” he said. “I just reacted. I just felt like this is the right thing to do.”
McCarthy says he recognized Menzies because he checked out the store Wednesday and acted like a customer.
In the end, it was perhaps a big lesson learned for the suspect.
“Clearly he didn’t read or he doesn’t know what Krav Maga and jiu-jitsu is but definitely a bad environment to come and try to break the law,” said Carrio.
Investigators say Menzies admitted to trying to steal the bikes and the Jeep.