The daughter of a Blount County jewelry store owner who shot a man who was trying to rob the store says she's proud of her father, while explaining exactly what happened.
Alcoa Police say Danny Malone, owner of Malone's Jewelers, shot suspect Steven Grant Cash and held Cash and his accomplice, Jordan Michael Echols, at gunpoint until police could arrive on Wednesday. Cash remains hospitalized.
Malone's daughter says he did what he had to do to protect himself.
"I am extremely proud. Just people look at him and assume he is, you know, he can't protect himself. You know he's in a wheel chair, he can't do much, but just the fact that he was able to protect himself you know. He may be handicapped, but he isn't ignorant," said Monica Malone.
Malone says one of the suspects was actually a former customer who had been to the store several times.
"It was just kind of a shock that somebody who knew him and had come into his store before would try to take advantage of him like that," said Malone.
In a statement, Danny Malone said he's been in the jewelry business for 30 years, but this is the first time he's had to use his gun. He also said the store will have added security measures, like security cameras.
Malone also gave his account of the attempted robbery. He said one of the men, who police identified as Cash, went into the restroom. At the same time, Echols came to the counter and said he was looking for something for his girlfriend. Malone showed him some chains, but noticed the man wasn't really looking at them, and became suspicious, and put the jewelry back in the case.
Then, he wrote, "I saw the other young man come running at full speed out of the lounge area. He was wearing a dark hoodie and a white mask with only two small eye holes in the mask."
Malone said the man jumped over the counter and went into Malone's office to get a bag of money he uses to buy scrap gold. Malone said that's when he got his gun out and chambered a round. He said he yelled, "stop right there" two times as the man ran toward him. He said he fired the gun when the man was about 3 1/2 to 4 feet in front of him.
"He jumped back over the showcase and fell to the floor. He got up and started to head toward the front door. I yelled at him to 'stop right there and sit down' several times," Malone wrote. This, he said, while he was dialing 911 and said he needed an ambulance.
Malone held the two men at gunpoint until police arrived a couple of minutes later.