HOUSTON – A man in the Museum District who refused to be a repeat robbery victim fought back Thursday. He put one suspect in the hospital, another in jail.
The victim was smoking a cigarette in front of the Caroline Collective on Caroline near Rosedale around 7 a.m.
Three suspects tried to rob him at gunpoint. But after being held up at the same location three weeks ago, the victim was ready this time. He reached into his SUV and pulled out a large-caliber handgun.
The man fired several times, wounding two of the suspects.
One of them tried to run, but collapsed with a bullet wound to the stomach. He was taken to Ben Taub Hospital where he’s in critical condition.
Police say the other two suspects continued to struggle with the victim, took his gun away and fled on foot.
"There were three of them," said a witness and neighbor who didn’t want to identify herself out of fear the robbers will come back. "They apparently had two guns and they were on him in a hurry. And he had the presence of mind to grab his gun and protect himself. I’m really glad he had a gun because I think he might have been killed today."
The suspects dropped the victim’s gun during their escape and police later recovered it.
One of them went to a nearby convenience store asking for help, but disappeared before police arrived.
He later showed up at UTMB in Galveston with bullet wounds to both hands. He is now in custody.
The victim wasn't hurt, but he was understandably rattled by the entire experience, his friends said.
"There was an incident before so that’s why he was prepared for this," said the victim’s friend, Grace Rodriguez. "That’s why he started carrying it. To be a little bit more safe."
"I mean I wish all guns would go away but that’s not gonna happen," said neighbor Mark Arms, who heard the gunshots this morning. "So I’m glad the guy had a gun and was able to protect himself you know."
Police are still searching for the third suspect.