A string of violent crimes are happening inside restaurants on the northwest side that hundreds of customers visit every day. There were three on Tuesday, all fairly close to one other; and in one of those robberies, the owner was shot several times.
Just before 7am Tuesday, two men wearing masks ran into the Fantastic Donuts and Croissant Shop. The owner, Crise Song, was behind the counter. Investigators say the suspects demanded cash and fired a weapon. That's when Song pulled out his own gun and shot back.
Investigators are now looking for the suspects who got away.
"It appears two individuals that entered the business and possibly a driver in a dark-colored sedan," said Sgt. Joe Freeman.
Song was hit by the gunfire and rushed to Ben Taub Hospital. Many of his loyal customers are stunned this happened to someone they describe as a hard worker.
"He's a real nice guy very helpful, hardworking, admiration for what he does," said customer Castas Varkarotas.
"He's a good guy. We're praying for him and his family," Ron Casteel said.
A few hours later, in the 1400 block of West Mount Houston, another donut shop was robbed. This time a man armed with a hunting knife walked into a Shipley's Donuts and demanded money. In the surveillance video, he also told the cashier to give him a soda before he left.
Police believe the same man may have robbed the Jack in the Box before he robbed the Shipley's.
"It's horrible; really hits home," Varkarotas said.
Investigators say they don't know if any of the armed robberies are related. For those who know Crise Song, they say the violence has gotten out of hand.
"We need to be a little more cautious, because if he can happen here can happen anywhere," said Varkarotas.
Anyone with information about the suspects or their location is asked to call Crime Stoppers of Houston at 713-222-TIPS.