HOUSTON A couple fought off a gunman who kicked in their patio door in northwest Harris County Tuesday morning. It happened at the Villages of Copperfield.

Beneath the victims shattered window, neighbors sounded ready to end crime.

I have a gun, Zach Allen, a neighbor said.

If they re knocking your door down, you should have no problem taking them out, dispatching them right away, said Ramon Rodriguez, another neighbor.

While most slept, A.J. Crockett heard someone trying to kick in his door.

You just heard banging, boom, boom, boom, boom, Crockett said. I was so scared that I told my girl to go get in the closet. She just followed me to the door.

Seconds later, neighbors heard gunfire.

I heard four shots, real clear, Rodriguez said.

Witnesses saw a woman and possibly two men running away. One of the men limped, according to witnesses.

He might have had dreads because when he ran, his head was shaking, like his hair, said Gail King, another neighbor.

Off-camera, the victim told KHOU 11 News someone climbed onto his second-floor patio around 3 a.m. That someone kicked in the patio door then fired a single shot from an Uzi-type gun. The victim fired back using his shotgun. That gunfire chased the bad guy off the balcony.

I would fire back too if somebody breaks into my house and shoots at me, Allen said.

The couple targeted said they moved into their apartment three weeks ago. This was the second time someone tried kicking in their door, the victims said.

So with no one in handcuffs, neighbors remain aware, prepared and at least one armed with a message.

Over here in Texas, we fight back, Rodriguez said. Everybody s armed and that s just the way it is around here. So let them do it again. They re just going to get hurt again.

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