Clerk shot multiple times during robbery at southeast Houston smoke shop

HOUSTON – A smoke shop employee is recovering after police said she was shot multiple times during a robbery in southeast Houston.

The shooting happened around 11:45 p.m. Friday at the Vitrum Smoke Shop on the Gulf Freeway near Almeda Genoa, authorities said.

Police said a man wearing a hoodie and ski mask walked into the shop wielding a pistol and demanded a customer’s wallet and money from the cash register.

The woman went to reach for a gun hidden behind the counter, and that is when the man opened fire, police said.

“During the course of the robbery, the female supposedly went for a gun that was behind the counter,” said Lt. Christopher Bruse, with the Houston Police Department. “At (that point) the suspect shot several times striking the victim several times in the torso area.”

The woman was also shot in her arms and hands. She was transported to a hospital and is expected to survive, police said. The woman never got the chance to fire the weapon.

Investigators said the gunman remains at large. Authorities described the gunman as a 6-foot tall black man.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Crime Stoppers at 713-222-TIPS.

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