Robbery victim confronted at a Redbox, shoots attacker to death

HPD: Two robbers got away, one was shot

By Mark Boyle - Reporter , Amanda Perez

HOUSTON - A robbery took a deadly turn outside a north Houston McDonald's after police said a man shot and killed a suspected robber who tried to steal his car.

The incident happened Tuesday evening at the McDonald's located at I-45 and West Little York.

Authorities said a 29-year-old man was at the Redbox at the McDonald's returning a movie when a 1999 dark green Honda Civic pulled up to the restaurant.

Police said two suspects got out of the vehicle and robbed the man at gunpoint, stealing his cell phone, keys and wallet. However, police said the victim also had a gun on him at the time.

"The suspects checked his front left pocket, they were looking for his cell phone but they didn't check out his front right pocket and that's the one where he had his gun," said Robert Torres with the Houston Police Department's homicide unit.

Two of the robbers jumped into the man's car, trying to steal it.

A third unknown suspect fled in the Civic.

As they were getting ready to back out, police said the man pulled out his weapon and fired several shots.

Officials said the man shot the robber sitting in the passenger seat, and also shot the robber sitting in the driver's seat. As the robber driving the car tried to get away, police said he fell out and died. Police identified him as 25-year-old Melvin Frederick Austin.

The other armed robber, later identified as 32-year-old Elijah Alexander Mims, was shot but was able to run away.

Mims was later picked up at another location by the third suspect in the Civic. 

While authorities were checking area hospitals for the suspect, Houston police received a call from officers in College Station alerting them that Mims had showed up at College Station Medical Center with a non life-threatening gunshot wound.

HPD homicide investigators interviewed Mims in College Station regarding his involvment in the incident.

Police said Mims is charged with aggravated robbery with a deadly weapon.

The green Honda was also recovered.   

Police said the man who was robbed told them he is a Concealed Handgun License carrier.

There are currently no charges pending, but authorities said the case is being turned over to the district attorney.  At this point, Torres said it appeared to be a case of justifiable homicide.

Anyone with information on the third unidentified suspect is asked to contact the HPD Homicide Division at 713-308-3600 or Crime Stoppers at 713-222-TIPS. 

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