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Spring breakers fight back against gunman at Florida gas station

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Four Indiana men on spring break in got the drop on two men who tried to rob them at gunpoint at a gas station in Oakland Park, Florida.
Wochit, Broward County (Florida) Sheriff’s Office

INDIANAPOLIS – It was supposed to be a fun night of partying in Florida to celebrate Alec Tanoos’ 21st birthday.

The four men from Indiana, two sets of brothers who are cousins, spent part of their spring break at a bar in South Beach. They headed home in the early hours and stopped for gas around 3:45 a.m.

That’s when a man wearing a mask and brandishing a gun ran over and stuck it into Tanoos’ ribcage.

“Give me everything you’ve got!” the gunman allegedly said.

Tanoos’ older brother, Jacob, who is 27, immediately grabbed a hold of the gunman’s shirt, yanked him away and tried to take the gun, while punching him repeatedly.

Their cousins, Aric and Alex Wisbey, joined the fray.

And the entire scene was captured on camera.

Surveillance video released by the Broward County Sheriff’s Office shows the four young men, all originally from Terre Haute, Indiana, wrestling and fighting back against the gunman and a second man. Eventually, 21-year old Aric Wisbey wrestles the gun away, pointing it at the attackers.

The video, published by law enforcement in a news release entitled “Victims turn the tables on armed robbers,” spread far and wide across the internet on Tuesday.

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‘You just know it’s not a good situation’

Wisbey, in a phone interview with IndyStar, called the experience as surreal.

“Once I had the gun, I just ran up and pointed it at both suspects,” Wisbey said. “I was screaming, trying to diffuse the situation. The suspect, he was like, ‘Calm down. Just give me my gun back.’ ”

Wisbey, who is 21, was the group’s designated driver for the evening. He was still in the car when the gunman approached Alec and Jacob Tanoos (the elder Tanoos now lives in Florida) and Wisbey’s older brother, Alex. All three were standing outside the vehicle by the gas pumps.

“When he came running up, wearing the mask, and you see a silver gun, you just know it’s not a good situation,” Alex Wisbey said.

“It’s been kind of surreal, kind of hard to sleep. It’s crazy, it’s absolutely nuts,” he added, after fielding dozens of media calls and emails Tuesday.

Ultimately, he said, he was relieved that the gunman and the driver of the vehicle fled the scene.

“Otherwise, I would have had to make one of the toughest decisions of my life,” he said.

The gun was loaded, police said, with five bullets.

Wisbey said he has experience with guns and has a concealed-carry permit in the state of Indiana.

Wisbey and his companions were able to note the license plate number of the vehicle and provided that to police.

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Police still searching for gunman

According to the Broward County Sheriff’s Office, the driver of the vehicle is Kevin Campbell. Police found Campbell after tracking the vehicle. A Fort Lauderdale police K-9 found Campbell hiding in some bushes.

He has since been arrested and faces several charges.

Detectives are still searching for the gunman, however. He is described as being about 6 feet tall and about 210 pounds. His hair is in dreadlocks. The gun he was carrying, a silver Taurus 9mm, was stolen in 2017 during a vehicle burglary, the Sheriff Department said.

Anyone with information about the crime is urged to call Broward Sheriff’s Office Detective Mark Copley at 954-321-4738, or you can contact Broward Crime Stoppers anonymously at 954-493-TIPS. Anonymous tips that lead to an arrest are eligible for a reward of up to $3,000, the sheriff’s office said.

Res: How a New Jersey teen walking her dog helped save kidnapped man from trunk of car

Follow Ginger Rough on Twitter: @gingerdawnrough

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