VICTORIA – A Fort Nelson man is facing several charges after a violent robbery and hatchet attack in Victoria last week.

Police were called to the Home Hardware store in the 1900-block of Oak Bay Avenue for a reported robbery on Nov. 1.

When officers arrived, witnesses reported that a man entered the store and picked up various items, including a hatchet.

When the man tried to leave without paying, an employee tried to stop him and was attacked with the hatchet, according to police.

The victim suffered non-life-threatening injuries before two customers stepped in to disarm the man.

Investigators say the perpetrator then took a Remembrance Day poppy box from the store counter and another employee intervened.

That staff member was also assaulted and he suffered non-life-threatening injuries, according to police.

The attacker then fled the store and was followed by the store manager. When the man picked up a large rock and confronted the manager, the manager retreated and lost sight of the perpetrator before officers arrived on scene.

Police reviewed store surveillance video and discovered the man was wanted on province-wide warrants for sexual assault, sexual interference, assaulting a police officer and other charges.

The VicPD major crimes unit took over the case and located the suspect in Saanich. He was taken into custody without incident by officers with the Saanich police canine unit.

Gary Reno faces charges of weapons possession, robbery and assault causing bodily harm, as well as charges related to his outstanding warrants.