THE dramatic story of how two strangers foiled an armed robbery in Ballarat’s central business district has been relived by one of the men that helped bring down the knife-wielding bandit.Father-of-three Eric Wytkamp, from Maryborough, was part of yesterday’s spectacular citizens’ arrest, which happened moments after an attack on Priceline Pharmacy about 8.15am.The offender allegedly stole a cash till from the Sturt Street store before fleeing along nearby Anticline Lane, towards Mair Street.Mr Wytkamp told The Courier he had just dropped off his wife at a Ballarat hospital when cries for help, possibly from a pharmacy employee who had followed the balaclava-clad thief, caught his attention.The 39-year-old’s instincts then took charge.“I saw the offender running down the laneway,’’ he said.“Not long after I first laid eyes on him, there was a van coming down behind him,” he said.“The offender turned and brandished a knife, waving it around at this van, and the van very, very nearly hit him. At that stage I started to run towards him because I knew there was something happening.“The bloke in the van got out and started giving chase on foot. “We were both running towards (the offender), but just as he was turning a corner he actually dropped the cash till drawer. That slowed him just enough for the other bloke to get a hand on him.”Mr Wytkamp said he and the other man detained the offender for up to 10 minutes before police arrived.“(The offender) reckons he couldn’t breath.“He also swore a little bit,” Mr Wytkamp said. “I said ‘if you can speak like that you are breathing alright’.“We had to shift the way we had him because I think he was in a lot of pain with two big blokes kneeling on him.“We had to shift his arms and get him a little more comfortable so he’d stop wriggling around and carrying on.”Mr Wytkamp, who works at Hazeldene’s in Lockwood, said he didn’t have time to feel afraid during the incident.“Knives don’t scare me because I can sort of defend myself to a point. I’m a big bloke,” he said.A 43-year-old man from Sebastopol appeared in Ballarat Magistrates Court yesterday afternoon where he was remanded in custody without making an application for bail. He stands charged with two counts of armed robbery, and is due back in court for committal mention in May.One of the charges relates to an armed robbery that took place at the same pharmacy less than two weeks ago.