HARRIS COUNTY, Texas -- A robbery suspect with a toy gun was shot and killed in a northeast Harris County smoke shop late Sunday.
The man's body was found in the parking lot of a strip center near the Eastex Freeway and Winfield Road around 9 p.m., deputies said.
The owner of the store said the would-be robber held a gun to his clerk's head and demanded money.
The clerk grabbed a loaded gun from under the counter and shot the suspect twice. The suspect ran into the parking lot, where he collapsed and died.
The suspect's gun turned out to be a toy, according to the store owner.
The owner, who didn't want to give his name, said he got the gun after a nearby business was held up over the weekend.
The T-Mobile store was robbed by three gunmen on Saturday. Those suspects got away.
Workers at a nearby dental clinic were already taking extra precautions because of what they called heavy crime in the area.
"We walk in together and we walk out together all the time," said Gladis Medina, an office manager at the clinic. "We stay together all the time and try to avoid leaving too late after dark."
Medina said thieves broke into her business in November and stole a TV.
"It’s really scary," she said.
Authorities were not releasing the name of the suspect killed by the store clerk.
They planned to present the case to a grand jury.