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Sub shop manager foils armed robbery

A Miami Subs manager made a bold decision that resulted in the arrest of an armed teenager Sunday night.

It also resulted in the manager -- Steve Lebrun -- being called a hero.

Surveillance video from the Miami Subs at 661 West Sunrise Boulevard shows a young man with a T-shirt over his face and a revolver in his hand bursting in to the store around 8:20 p.m. Sunday. Police said Devane Jenkins, 17, was the man with the gun.

Lebrun said as soon as he saw the man slide over the front counter he knew it would be trouble.

"Oh God, he got a gun'" Lebrun remembered thinking. "I figured, like either we die, or I save a life."

Lebrun would get a chance to save a life in a few seconds.

Police said the thief demanded money from the cash register, while pointing the gun at two female employees. When those employees ran away, Jenkins took Lebrun and a female employee to the safe.

Jenkins is accused of pointing the gun at the female employee and while she was crouched down, he "pulled the trigger, when the gun only made a clicking sound."

At that point, Lebrun leapt into action.

"I heard click," he said. "I saw [the gun] was empty. That's when I whipped his tail."

Lebrun grabbed the gun and struggled with Jenkins for control of it, until finally, taking the weapon from the teen.

According to police, Jenkins tried to get away by using a fire extinguisher to smash open a window. It didn't work.

Surveillance video shows Jenkins trying to climb back over the counter but Lebrun was waiting for him.

"As he jumped across the counter, that's when I hit him in the face. Bam," Lebrun said.

A short time later, Lebrun began struggling with Jenkins again. This time a customer came to aid and helped Lebrun force Jenkins to the ground. Another customer called 911 and within minutes, two police officers arrived and arrested Jenkins for armed robbery.

While on the ground, Lebrun said Jenkins begged for leniency.

"He said, 'I need the money, let me go.' That's all he said," Lebrun reported.

Fort Lauderdale Police Spokesman Sgt. Frank Sousa said Lebrun did a "great job."

"Although it's something we don't advocate sometimes that's what you need to get a bad guy off the streets," Sousa said.

Sousa added that police are investigating whether Jenkins has been involved in several other recent robberies in the area.

"We have had a recent string of robberies," Sousa said. "Very similar in nature. We're definitely looking at the possibility that this suspect was involved in those other robberies."

We tried to speak with Jenkins' family at their Fort Lauderdale home Tuesday night but they declined.

Lebrun, meanwhile, said this is the third time he's been the victim of a robbery. He added that with five kids and a wife at home, he feared for his safety but decided to act anyway.

"When he was threatening a young lady, that's when I took matters in my hands," he said.

As for the young age of the suspect, Lebrun said, "I feel sorry for his parents but that's his decision and he's gotta pay the consequences."

Lebrun said he would do the same thing again -- sacrificing his personal safety for the safety of others.

"I guess it's the right thing to do," he said.

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