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VENTURA COUNTY FOCUS | WEST COUNTY / SANTA PAULA

Station Owner, Wife Stabbed by Robber

January 22, 1998|ROBERT GAMMON

A 61-year-old gas station owner was stabbed Wednesday while trying to save his 55-year-old wife from a knife-wielding robber.

Joe Lee of Santa Paula received a 4-inch gash in his left side after the thief stabbed Sue Lee in the hand, said Santa Paula Police Sgt. James Ward.

"He was basically protecting his wife," Ward said.

Sue Lee was treated at the scene and her husband was taken to Santa Paula Memorial Hospital, where he was later released, police said.

The lone robber, about 18 years old, entered the Lees' Arco gas station at 611 E. Harvard Blvd. just after 8 a.m. and demanded cash. Then he lunged across the counter and stabbed Sue Lee.

Joe Lee grabbed the assailant from behind and had begun to wrestle with him when he was stabbed. The robber fled with an undisclosed amount of cash.

The suspect was described as a Latino, between 5 feet, 5 inches and 5 feet, 7 inches, with a medium build. He was wearing a gray jacket and blue jeans. He is being sought on charges of robbery, attempted murder and assault with a deadly weapon, Ward said.

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