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Fairfield Police: Would-Be Robber Shot by Store Clerk

FAIRFIELD -- Frightening moments at a Fairfield smoke shop.

On Sunday afternoon, surveillance cameras caught a brazen attempted robbery at Smoke Plus on North Texas Street. A man, hiding his face in a mask and bandanna -- points a gun at a clerk while walking toward the counter. He hops over, and he can be seen stuffing cash in his pockets before struggling with two employees.

"My reaction was ... damn!" said Felicia Williams, a friend of the clerk.

What you can't see or hear in the video are shots fired. Fairfield police say one of the clerks, fearing for his safety, opened fire at the would-be robber, sending him to the hospital.

"Everybody's kind of shocked a little bit," said Williams.

Williams is the clerk's close friend and a loyal customer. She's disturbed by what happened to her friend.

"What if I woud have been here? Just a lot of thoughts," Williams said.

Investigators say the weapon used in the attempted robbery was a BB gun. But that didn't make the situation less threatening, said Sgt. Matt Bloesch.

"He went in with a realistic firearm to rob the store and the clerk had no idea whether the gun was real or not," said Bloesch.

Bloesch said the clerk is not being charged.

"He lawfully possessed that firearm, he shot the man that was robbing his store because he feared for his life and he was defending himself, and he was defending another person," Bloesch said.

Williams and other customers believe the clerk acted heroically by protecting himself, another employee and his business.

"This is a good place. I felt he did what he was supposed to do!" Williams said.