Carjacker crashes into gas pump, causes huge fireball

Surveillance video was released as authorities search for the suspect

By Joel Eisenbaum - Investigative Reporter

HOUSTON - Surveillance video from the scene of a fiery carjacking in north Houston reveals a vindictive robber who tried to run down the victim even after he had his SUV.

The crime happened about 1am Sunday morning at the King Express / Valero gas station at 3635 Aldine Mail Route.

"Thank God everybody is OK. The employees are OK. Nobody got hurt outside," store manager Niaz Khan said.

Three separate video cameras caught the initial crime on tape, as well as the subsequent fire.

The trouble started when the robber opened the door and got behind the wheel of a Chevy Tahoe which was stopped to fill up. The unidentified robber may not have realized a woman was in the front passenger seat when he slid behind the wheel.

The woman is seen bolting from the SUV, with the robber emerging seconds later demanding the keys from the rightful owner, who is exiting the convenience store.

The male victim complied and the robber drove away in the Tahoe only to reappear seconds later, crashing into a gas pump.

It is not clear why the robber circled back, but it appears he may have been trying to thwart an attempt by the victim to get help, by running him over.

Firefighters managed to contain the fire with a special foam. There is more than $10,000 worth of damage to the gas station but it is open for business.

The carjacker escaped in the SUV. His identity and whereabouts are unknown.

No serious injuries were reported.

If you have any useful information about this crime, call Houston Crime Stoppers at 713-222-TIPS.

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