Gas station owner opens fire after would-be robbers plow truck into store

By Daniela Sternitzky-Di Napoli - Digital News Editor, Vincent Crivelli - Reporter

HOUSTON - Multiple people have been detained after a failed smash-and-grab at a southeast Houston gas station. 

According to authorities, the incident happened just after 2 a.m. Friday at a Valero on Martin Luther King Boulevard and Bellfort Street.

Police said the driver inside a stolen white truck backed the vehicle through the front of the convenience store in an attempt to steal the ATM.

VIDEO: Surveillance video show moment robbers plow truck into Valero store

When the ATM did not move as much as he wanted, the driver reversed into the store again, police said. 

“The truck ended up backing up ... one more time to try to knock (the ATM) loose better,” said Lt. R Wilkins, with the Houston Police Department.

At this point, four other people waiting outside the store rushed inside to try and take the ATM, so the store clerk grabbed a pistol in each hand and opened fire on the group, authorities said.

The group fled the scene on foot. 

Officers said they have detained a few people, but no one has been arrested yet. It is unclear if any of the people involved in the smash-and-grab were injured in the shooting.

There were customers inside the store at the time of the incident.

“There were a couple customers inside," Wilkins said. "They are lucky they did not get run over.”

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

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