HARRIS COUNTY – A Harris County Sheriff’s deputy shot and killed a robber who was choking and threatening to kill a convenience store clerk Monday, officials said.
The shooting happened around 1:45 a.m. inside the Stripes store located on Highway 249 and Upland Willow Avenue. Harris County Sheriff Deputy James Stretch noticed a Volkswagen parked in a turning lane and went looking for its driver inside the Stripes store nearby.
Stretch walked in to find a man behind the counter with his hands around a female clerk’s throat, deputies said. The man was threatening to kill the woman, investigators said. They said Stretch twice yelled at the man to stop him. Instead, investigators said the man threw a bag of money and then reached into his pocket. That is when Stretch pulled out his gun and fired once. The man died behind the counter.
“I told the main manager just two weeks ago, because I almost got hit by a truck, that they need security in this store,” said Jeannette Hennig, a regular customer. “I just came by and I saw (the detectives) so I knew something had happened because I work at Kroger and our bank has been robbed four times.”
Henning said she stops at the store every morning. She buys coffee and talks with Stripes employees.
Stretch is a patrol officer who has been with the department since 2000.
“Had (he) not come by it might have ended a different way,” said Deputy Thomas Gilliland, public information officer for the Harris County Sheriff’s Office.