HOUSTON - Houston police believe a suspect used a high-powered rifle to shoot through bulletproof glass, striking a gas station clerk in the head.

It is enough to make anyone think twice about who they trust.

Around 4 15 a.m. Wednesday morning, a clerk at the Phillips 66 on Beechnut Street at Cook Road in far southwest Houston unlocked and opened a door to sell cigarettes to a customer he recognized.

That customer then forced the clerk back inside with an assault-style gun and two other men.

The men pushed him to the ground and ripped a key from his neck. They used it to break into his office where they then stole cash and cigarettes.

At one point, bullets punctured safety glass, which was supposed to be bulletproof. The clerk was forced back on the ground. Debris from the holes hit him in the head and hand.

The three robbers sped off in a gray car. Workers are hoping surveillance video can now help catch their suspects.

The clerk was treated at a hospital and has been released.

The clerk told investigators he recognized the customer at the door because he had stolen from him in the past. He told police by selling him cigarettes he had hoped the man was trying to become an honorable, paying customer.

Anyone who recognizes the suspects is asked to call Crime Stoppers of Houston at 713-222-TIPS (8477).

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