ONLY ON 3: Elderly Good Samaritan gets robbed at knifepoint - | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

ONLY ON 3: Elderly Good Samaritan gets robbed at knifepoint

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An elderly East Ridge man thought he was being a Good Samaritan when he was robbed at knifepoint over the weekend. It happened in broad daylight after finishing his daily breakfast at the McDonald's on Brainerd Rd.

The male suspect got in Charles Finley's truck, and said he would kill the 76-year-old if he didn't give up his wallet. The thief got away with $600 and police have not yet tracked him down.

Almost every morning, you'll find Charles Finley at the McDonald's on Brainerd Rd. in Chattanooga. Same time, same table, same friends and same coffee order.

"They beat Starbucks any day," Finley said.

But Saturday was much different than any other morning.

"He was sitting in one of the corner seats by himself," Finley remembered.

Finley recognized the man as another regular customer he had seen many times before. It was pouring down rain, and the man approached him and asked for a ride to the bus stop, about a mile down the road.

"I felt sorry for him, so I said, 'Sure, get in. You can ride down there'," Finley said. "I made a big mistake."

Within minutes, the 76-year-old was being held up with a knife.

"All he could say was, 'Give me your wallet or I'll kill you right here'," said Finley. The man was holding the knife against Finley's stomach. "That's when I really got scared," he said.

The man grabbed the wallet and then took off into the parking lot. Finley said he tried chasing him in his truck and even attempted to run him over, but the man took off across the street.

Finley said he was so shaken up, he dialed 911 several times but couldn't get through because he forgot to push send. "That's how scared I was," he said.

His granddaughter, Katie Fuentes, rushed to the scene after hearing about the robbery.

"When I got there, I went over and hugged him, he was still shaking," Fuentes said. "It looked like he had tears in his eyes and he said he'd never been so scared in his life."

Fuentes wants the suspect off the streets before it can happen to someone else.

"He's just an older man, you just feel so bad for him," said Fuentes. "He can be ornery, don't get me wrong," she laughed. "But he would give you the shirt off his back, and that's what's so sad."

And what's sad for her granddad, she said, is his new perspective on lending somebody a hand.

"I will not do nothing' for nobody anymore," said Finley. "You can take that to the bank."

Finley said he won't quit his morning coffee routine. He was back at McDonald's on Monday morning. But he said he'll have much more peace of mind once an arrest is made.

Chattanooga Police will not publicly release the suspect's name, but said they had issued a warrant for his arrest. Police said they do not believe residents are in danger, but do suggest taking normal precautions.

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