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Duluth Small Businessman Robbed, Shot: 'None of it Seemed Real'

Created: 12/26/2013 6:32 PM WDIO.com
By: Alan Hoglund
ahoglund@wdio.com

A Duluth business owner who fought back before being robbed and shot, says he'd do it again.

In a bed at St. Luke's Hospital Thursday, 27-year-old Colin Mackin was in good spirits, smiling and laughing. With the wound on his chest covered by bandages, he said the shot "went in right here...very cleanly out the other side."

Mackin told Eyewitness News that it hurt to breathe because of a tube placed in his lung to drain fluid. He told us the shot punctured his lung and caused it to collapse. 

The man's brush with death started inside ILF Smartphone Clinic, a small phone repair shop on 1700 block of London Road in Duluth. He told us two men walked in Monday evening with their faces hidden under masks.

Mackin thought at first that they might trying to stay warm. "The last conclusion I want to jump to is that I'm about to get robbed."

But when Mackin greeted the men, he told us they said "you can get on the ground."

With a gun pointed at his face, Mackin said "that's when the fight or flight kicked in."

Adrenaline pumping, Mackin said one of the men tried to tape his arms together. "The whole time I really didn't want the situation to be happening. I don't know if I checked out mentally but I wasn't about to get tied up in my own shop...I pulled my arm forward and was like, 'no we're not doing this' and I started to get up and he put me into a headlock."

Mackin said the men fired warning shots, but that they weren't as loud as he expected them to be.

"The whole situation seemed fake. None of it seemed real."

Mackin said he followed the two men outside when they took his computer. He said he grabbed one of them by the neck and took him into the snow bank.

He told us he remembers getting punched before hearing a shot."I didn't realize right away that I had been shot. It wasn't until I felt warm liquid going down my chest," he said.

By the time the ambulance arrived, Mackin said "things looked almost pixilated. Everyone sounded like I was underwater."

Mackin was concerned for his life, but said he was encouraged when emergency crews arrived on the scene. Later, he told us"the doctors said, when people get shot in the chest, they die."

But just days after a bullet tore through his chest, Mackin's in good condition.

Mackin said he is a man with faith in God. He called the fact that he's still taking in air a miracle. "I really shouldn't be here, but God saw fit to save me," he said. 

"My pastor always says that 'if you're still breathing air then there is a purpose, God has a purpose for your life.'"

Police encourage you to call them before any type of confrontation. Mackin said he was trying to get help by calling 911 or setting off an alarm, but was stopped by the suspects.

He told us that during the robbery "there are several attempts where I'm trying to figure out how I'm going to alert someone else that there is something going on."

Two men, ages 32 and 29, were taken into custody on Tuesday on the 1800 block of East Second Street, where a .22 caliber revolver was found, according to police. Neither of the men had been charged as of Thursday afternoon.

Mackin is eager to go back to work, hoping to be there by sometime next week. When he does, he said security will be a higher priority.

Should his business ever get robbed again, he said "I think i would still try to fight back, but I'd want to be a little more prepared."

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