2 charged in robbery gone wrong where arm was severed

AP News
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Posted: Feb 13, 2016 4:17 PM

NEW YORK (AP) — Both people involved in bizarre botched robbery over pricey sneakers have been arrested after the victim rammed the teenage robber with his SUV, severing his arm, police said Saturday.

Zachary Sam, 17, had arranged online to meet Philippe Pierre to buy a pair of $190 Air Jordan sneakers on a Brooklyn street, police said. But when he hopped into Pierre's SUV, he pulled out a gun and demanded the shoes for free, according to authorities.

Surveillance footage from the scene shows the teenager get out of the car, put something in his pocket, and walk away with a white plastic bag.

Pierre, 39, drives away slowly, but then makes a sharp U-turn and rams Sam, pinning him under the car and a fence. The teen hopped up and staggered away, his sleeve flapping. The arm and the gun were discovered at the scene, officials said.

Alex St. Fleur told the Daily News of New York that he was walking down the street when he saw the SUV jump the sidewalk and slam into the teenager. He and his son ran over and they saw the arm lying on the ground next to a shoebox.

"Everyone was yelling 'Come back! Your arm! You're going to bleed out!'" St. Fleur told the newspaper.

But Sam got onto a nearby bus, though the driver refused to move until he got off, and he ran to his home nearby. Sam remained hospitalized; his arm was severed below the elbow, according St. Fleur.

The teen was arrested on a charge of robbery and criminal possession of a weapon. Pierre was arrested on a charge of attempted murder.

Pierre's cousin told WABC-TV that the shaken man was just trying to help police catch an armed robber. He said the incident had destroyed two families.

Both men were in custody. It was not immediately clear whether they had attorneys who could comment on their arrests.