Blows from boat paddle drive robbery suspects from a Laurel Co. home

A Laurel County man used a boat paddle to fend off an attacker during an apparent robbery attempt Thursday, according to a news release from Laurel County Sheriff John Root.

According to the release, two men knocked on the door of a mobile home 7 miles west of London about 1:25 a.m. Thursday.

When the homeowner, Richard Lawson, opened the door, a man pointed a pistol at him. Lawson scuffled with the would-be robber, who dropped his pistol, according to the release.

The second man, who had a wooden club, came into the house, grabbed Lawson's wife and demanded medicine. But the woman told her 17-year-old daughter to call 911, according to police.

As the girl dialed 911, Lawson hit the first man over the head with a boat paddle, and both would-be robbers ran out of the house, according to the news release.

One man was described as white, 6 feet tall and weighing 200 pounds, with thinning, sandy-colored hair. He was wearing a toboggan cap with white stars on it, a dark jacket and jeans.

The man's weapon, which he left behind, was a .25-caliber nickel-plated pistol with handles held together with a ponytail holder, police said.

The second man was white, 18 to 25 years old, and about 6 feet tall with a thin build. He was wearing a camouflage ski mask, a dark coat and jeans, police said.

One of the men might have an injured arm because a sling was found after they left, police said.

Lawson received facial injuries, and his wife had scratches on her shoulder. Neither required treatment, police said.