HOLLYWOOD (CBS4) – An attempted robbery turned into a shootout at a Hollywood gas station. In the end, one robbery suspect was killed by the clerk, a second was arrested.
It could have ended very differently if Hasib Kuric, who is homeless, hadn’t intervened.
Kuric was standing outside the UHaul truck he calls home behind the Exxon gas station, at 5190 South State Road 7, around midnight when he saw two men with weapons putting on masks.
While some people may have run the other way, Kuric said he ran into store to warn the clerk that trouble was coming.
“I just entered inside and told Leo to close the door, call the police,” said Kuric. “He saw me surprised and then he pushed the button automatically. While he was pushing the button, the guy was already in the door.”
Kuric said the would-be robbers were on his tail and one started shooting at him as they stormed the storm.
“He shot at me three times and told me ‘you’ll never do this again’,” said Kuric.
Kuric dove into an aisle as the clerk pulled his own gun and shot one of the robbers. Kuric said more than a dozen shots were exchanged.
“I don’t see who was shooting who but he started screaming. I come out from the islands and I see him lying down,” said Kuric.
The armed robbery suspect died in the doorway.
The second person, identified as 19-year old Joshua Stuart, ran to a white Chevy and drove off. The clerk called 9-1-1 and gave the operator a description of the car. It was stopped several blocks away and Stuart was arrested.
Kuric says there was a third suspect who was the getaway driver. Police have not confirmed they are looking for any other suspects.
Kuric said he never wanted any trouble but he feared for the clerk’s life, especially since he has four kids.
“I was happy when his wife talk with him on phone. When he start hugging me,” said Kuric.
Store owner Ram Narine said the clerk who killed the assailant is still shaken.
“He’s not doing well,” said Narine. “It’s strange to know somebody got shot while you are trying to protect who ever is around.”
Police said this appears to be a clear case of self-defense and do not expect to charge the clerk.