A MASKED gunman died when he tried to rob a bookies and have-a-go punters overpowered him last night.

The pistol-wielding robber — in his 50s and wearing a gas mask — stormed the Ladbrokes but the heist went wrong when customers pounced and forced him to the floor.

When police arrived to arrest the gunman they could get no reponse from him.

Paramedics fought for 20 minutes to revive him using CPR before he was pronounced dead at the scene.

The incident has been referred to watchdog the Independent Police Complaints Commission which investigates all incidents where a person dies after contact with the police.

There were 12 customers in the shop in Crownhill Road, Plymouth, Devon, at the time of the raid which sparked a major police investigation.

The scene was last night cordoned off as forensic science teams searched for clues.

Chief Insp Ian Drummond-Smith said: “This is a very serious incident. We cannot speculate on what has actually taken place here today.

“A full investigation has now begun and while the IPCC carry out their investigation it is not appropriate to comment further.”

A police spokesman said: “A man in Plymouth believed to be in his 50s has collapsed and died while attempting to carry out an armed robbery.

“Full circumstances are not yet clear, but it is understood a man entered the betting shop sometime around 6.45pm wearing a gas mask and holding a pistol-type firearm.

“People in the shop immediately tackled him and were able to restrain and disarm him. The man was held down, still wearing his gas mask, while police were called.”

The spokesman added: “It quickly became clear the man was unresponsive and an ambulance was immediately requested by police who carried out CPR until paramedics arrived. Around 20 minutes later the man was pronounced dead.

“The man has been identified but next of kin have not been informed at this time.”

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Masked gunman dies after punters grab him – The Sun
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