WATERBURY, Conn. (WTNH)– A Waterbury store clerk is paralyzed from the neck down after being shot on the job. It happened over the weekend and the teenager who police say pulled the trigger faced a judge Monday.
There have been so many cars pulling into Buck’s Market asking how their favorite clerk is. Store owners say they believe the 19-year-old suspect Tony Dupre comes there often and their both sad and angry that their employee was so badly hurt for no reason at all.
As Dupre faced a judge, a 61-year-old convenience store employee is suffering very serious injuries, being paralyzed and having no feeling from the neck down. This news was difficult for Frank Cazimovski to tell his 11-year-old daughter Medina, who loves coming to the store daily to see the man with “the hat,” David Shand. Now, she and some of the store customers and owners are afraid after Shand told police he was shot without warning.
“I’ve been thinking what if someone comes in and tries to shoot me?” said Medina Cazimovski.
Around 10:30 Sunday morning, a customer found Shand lying behind the counter in a pool of blood. Police say the man seen in a video surveillance picture is Dupre. Court papers say Shands told police he was sweeping behind the counter and without warning he was shot. That’s when Dupre stepped over him and took off with items and money in the register.
The owners are heartbroken and also frustrated. Rafael Bonilla didn’t want to show his face, but showed News 8 he always has his gun visible when he’s working.
“We strongly hope an example is made out of this case in the court system. We strongly believe in gun control because the end up in the wrong hands,” said Bonilla.
“As an owner in a plaza, I’m worried I have to go out and get a gun permit,” said Herman Reed.
“It’s really sad. It’s someone who’s 61-years-old. It’s a sad commentary. I’m heart broken,” said customer Otis Cherry.
Dupre lives with his grandmother. She tells News 8 he’s never given her trouble and is a good kid. He was held on $1 million bond and is back in court August 13th.