CLARKSVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — Two minutes is all it took for a man to storm a Clarksville family-owned smoke shop, brutally stab the employee and make off with cash. That’s what family members left cleaning up the aftermath Monday at Rony’s Smoke Shop told News 2.

The victim’s daughter was among them, saying what happens from here is in God’s hands.

The small smoke shop on North Riverside Drive remains closed following the tragic turn of events Friday night. Surveillance footage shows a man entering the shop around 7:40 p.m. The suspect wearing a t-shirt over his head and face entered the shop, jumped the counter and stabbed the employee multiple times before taking off with cash.

“It was so quick you wouldn’t even know how to react in that situation,” Jessie Worthy, who is a lifelong resident of Clarksville told News 2 after watching the surveillance footage.

The smoke shop is in a busy area, just across from the Clarksville Parks and Recreation Center, where many were enjoying the river views as children played on the playground on a sunny Monday.

“Playgrounds used to be considered safe and now there are stabbings right across the road,” said Worthy.

The suspect’s actions were described as quick and brash, leaving many in the community with unanswered questions.

“How can you be hateful to somebody that’s just there working,” questioned Melinda Holmes who was visiting Clarksville.  

Some point to the influx of people moving to Clarksville and the cost of inflation as driving factors in crimes like this.

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“Because Nashville is getting overpopulated, we are getting a huge increase in people here, and I’ve only just seen traffic get worse… crime get worse. There’s no need to go to that extreme, and it’s absolutely heartbreaking to hear that happened to a small business,” said Worthy. 

The victim’s family and the community hold on to hope that the violent robber is found.

“[I] hope there’s enough footage that somebody will recognize him in Clarksville,” Worthy stated.

The family says the victim should make a full recovery and that he had another surgery scheduled for Monday afternoon.

Rony employees say they don’t know when the smoke shop will reopen.

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Anyone who recognizes the suspect or has additional information is asked to contact Det. Jason Kurtich at (931) 648-0656 ext. 5556, or to submit an anonymous tip, call Crimestoppers at (931) 645-8477 or go online to submit a tip at