BAYTOWN, Texas – A 41-year-old man is in critical condition after police said a he was shot while trying to rob a gas station store Saturday morning in Baytown.
At about 10:30 a.m. the suspect, wearing mask, walked into the Alexander Food Store in the 2100 block of North Alexander near Lacey Drive, according to investigators with the Baytown Police Department. He showed a gun to the store clerk and demanded cash.
The clerk told him to put the gun down, but when he refused, the clerk pulled his own gun and shot the suspect in the stomach, police said.
“The clerk in fear for his life pulled a weapon of his own, pointed it at the suspect and demanded him to drop his weapon,” said BPD Lt. Eric Thomas Freed.
The suspect ran out of the store and fell down in front of the building – his getaway car, silver Dodge was still running. Christina Odom was doing laundry nearby when she heard the commotion.
“We heard bow, bow. We looked over this way. I saw the owner of the store with a gun pointing at the guy, and he fell to the ground,” Odom said. “I was scared, my heart is still pumping.”
The wounded robbery suspect was flown to Memorial Hermann Trauma Institute, where he was last listed in critical condition.
“This comes on the heels of three robberies we had yesterday (Friday),” Freed said. “I think our community is on edge.”
During the height of Friday’s thunderstorms, three masked and armed men robbed the AT&T in the 6600 block of Garth Road. Then 45 minutes later, police say three masked and armed men with rifles robbed the Compass Bank in the 4800 block of Garth Road.
“They told the teller to get on their stomachs, and they are getting pistol whipped,” said Gus Boulafentis, a witness who works nearby.
On Thursday night, the Tobacco Barn on North Alexander was also hit. Police said a suspect jumped over the counter and demanded money. Clerks in the area are glad the owner from Saturday morning’s attempted robbery was able to defend himself.
Police are reviewing surveillance video and talking to witnesses. They’re trying to figure out if all the robberies are connected.