IONIA, Mich. — Surveillance video is revealing what exactly happened inside an Ionia County convenience store when a man dressed up as a ninja for Halloween pushed his way behind the register, swinging a katana sword at a bewildered clerk.
The stabbing happened Halloween night around 11:39 a.m. at 'More Purks' convenience store on W. Lincoln Avenue in Easton Township.
The Ionia County Sheriff’s Office says Wroten, dressed in all black and carrying a katana sword, walked to the convenience store and tried to use a rope to tie the door shut from the outside. Deputies say the store clerk, 56-year-old Ted Rux Jr., confronted the suspect from inside the store and asked what was going on.
That is where the surveillance video obtained Thursday picks up, at first without audio.
As Rux is speaking with him through a front door, Wroten lifts up his blade and strikes the clerk through the slightly open door.
The pair tussle, making their way inside the store. Police say this is the point at which Wroten sliced Rux in the ear, nearly severing it entirely.
At this point, the audio in the surveillance video kicks in.
"Alright man... I'll do it, I'll do it," Rux appears to say.
"Here, take the whole drawer. Take the whole f——-g drawer."
While the clerk is cooperating with the sword-wielding man, trying to give him the money in his drawer, Wroten's mind seems to be somewhere else entirely.
"You f——d my family over, you ruined my family," Wroten yells at him.
Confused, Rux responds, "Who are you... What are you talking about man, what are you talking about?"
Initially sounding angry, Wroten's emotions seem to flip in an instant.
"Im sorry... they didn’t listen to me," Wroten tells the clerk.
He responds, "I'm sorry too man, I don’t know what happened."
Rux continues trying to point the man towards the cash in the drawer. Wroten grabs some of what is in the drawer and then continues speaking.
"That's all I’m going to take, you can have the rest," he says.
"I'm so sorry, I'm so sorry... take the rest of the money, man."
"Huh?" Rux responds.
At this point, Wroten seems to be confused as to what is happening as well.
"You want the sword?" he then asks Rux.
The clerk tells him to leave the store. "Just leave," he says loudly.
Wroten asks, with emotion in his voice, "Where do I go?"
"Out. Out the door," Rux replies firmly.
Wroten leaves the store and is quickly arrested by officers with the Ionia County Sheriffs Office.
FOX 17 spoke to the owner of More Purks, Mark Purkey, on Thursday.
Purkey says that Rux continues to improve. He says the clerk benefited significantly from several plastic surgeons who were able to work on him soon after the attack.
He says business at the store is down but figures traffic will resume soon, as the katana attack was an isolated incident.
Wroten is facing numerous felonies related to this incident, as well as charges related to an October 20 case of resisting or obstructing an officer.
He is expected back in court for both cases in April.