HARRIS COUNTY, Texas -- A northside Family Dollar store became a crime scene again as a sheriff's deputy shot a robbery suspect, authorities said.
According to the Harris County Sheriff’s Office, the incident occurred at 9 p.m. Wednesday at the store on Kuykendahl Road near Ella Boulevard.
A manager called 911 as the gunman walked in, deputies said.
The gunman went out the back door as authorities surrounded the business. The sheriff’s office said a deputy followed the man and, fearing for his life, fired two shots.
Paramedics took the suspect to the hospital in critical condition.
“No deputies were injured,” said Thomas Gilliland with the sheriff’s office. “There were some employees in the building as well, also three customers. They were all fine. No one was injured in the exchange that occurred outside the building on the back of the property.”
Deputies said the suspect did not fire any shots.
As is protocol, HCSO's Internal Affairs, the Office of Inspector General, and the district attorney’s office will investigate the shooting.
The deputy involved in the incident is a six-year veteran, the sheriff's office said.
A store manager told authorities the suspect looked like a man involved in a previous robbery that also happened around closing time.
The Family Dollar is the location of a SWAT scene in May. In that case, armed men forced customers and employees to the back of the store. The robbers fired shots inside the business and then fled, but no injuries were reported.
The store was robbed at least two times in 2013 as well.
“This family dollar has been robbed several times. The motive that this robber was trying was the same as a robbery that occurred before, where the suspect comes in, pretends to be a shopper,” Gilliland said. “At that point he makes himself into the back of the store, either into an office area or to a storeroom. Waits for the manager to shut down, comes out, and robs the place.”
Customers hope it sends a message to those involved in a system of stealing here which has worked like this.
“I mean if the dude looked suspicious and he had a gun, and his hands are in his pockets and yes you should call the police if you know you think somebody’s you know going to do something in your store,” Ashley Henley, a customer, said.