HOUSTON -- Just after closing around 2:30 Saturday morning, four armed men barged in at EJ's Place demanding money.
Instead, a customer inside the bar, which is located on the 16500 block of Kuykendahl Road, pulled out his gun and started exchanging fire with the robbers. He shot and killed two of them while the other two ran. Once the heated exchange ended, the patron left, too.
"We're still trying to determine who he is, and why he left the scene," said Harris County Sheriff's Sgt. Robert Spurgeon.
Harris County Sheriff's deputies are looking into whether the same robbers held up a gas station on Cypresswood earlier in the night.
Most folks driving by EJ's Place Saturday afternoon thought the patron there was in the right.
"He has his right to protect himself and his family and his friends," said Charles Webb. "It's just unfortunate something like that happened."
Another neighbor, Danielle Russell, added, "Being a mom, yeah, I would feel safe knowing that he has a gun and he's going to protect me in a robbery."
But a sign in the bar window clearly states it's a felony to carry a gun inside. Under Texas law, even licensed carriers can't have guns in bars. That could explain why the patron left.
"Everybody in there is just a happy and nice atmosphere and everybody's real pleasant," said Webb. "I can't imagine that happening there."
Another longtime customer said that the patron who killed the robbers always stays until closing to walk the female bartenders to their cars. The friend said the man would never start anything, but would always protect his friends.
"It's sad. It's unfortunate that we live in that type of world," said Webb.
Investigators say the robbers didn't actually steal anything before the shooting happened.
They are still searching for the two robbers who got away, and looking for connections to any other crimes. They're asking anyone with information to call the Harris County Sheriff's Office or Crime Stoppers.