GASTON COUNTY, NC (WBTV) - A store clerk and her son were injured in an armed robbery at a convenience store in Gaston County Sunday.
It happened around 7:18 p.m. at the Lowell Mini Mart.
The clerk said the robber hit her in the back of the head with the gun as he forced her to open the register. The robber reportedly injured her son so badly with the pistol that he went to the hospital with a severe cut to his forehead, according to the police report.
"My son came to bring me something to eat. He was standing around and we were just talking. A gentleman came in the side door. He asked about prices on cartons of Newport cigarettes," the clerk said. "I turned around to get the keys to open the cabinet - that's when he grabbed my son around the neck, pointed the gun at his head, and pulled him back."
"He kept telling my son 'I want the money, I want the money.' My son said 'I don't work here,'" the clerk said. "I said 'that's my son' and he said 'I will kill your son.' I said 'you can have whatever you want.'"
The woman said her grandson somehow came in next to her, and he pointed the gun at him and said "I'll kill him," the clerk alleges.
The suspect vehicle was described as a 2010 or newer baby blue Hyundai Sonata. Police say at least one black man and at least one white man were inside the Sonata. They think the vehicle was stolen during a carjacking Saturday night and may have been recovered since both crimes took place.
A witness to the carjacking described the frightening scene to WBTV Monday night. A woman who asked not to be identified said she saw the incident unfold across the street from her home on Hartman Street in Gastonia. She said three men were attacking another man while an innocent woman watched in horror.
"I saw them stomping on his head, kicking his ribs, kicking his legs," said the witness.
She said she thought the attackers had been waiting for the man in a dark area by some abandoned homes in the neighborhood. She said tried to get help as soon as she saw what was happening.
"I was calling 9-1-1 as I was running over there. I don't know what I was gonna do but I was gonna try to help," said the woman.
She said the assailants got in the victim's vehicle and left as she approached them. WBTV also spoke to the alleged victim Monday night. He asked not to be identified and said he is unsure who the attackers are. He said he has a fracture in his face as a result of the attack.
Several similar incidents were reported in Gastonia and Belmont. Police are reviewing surveillance to determine whether the cases are connected.
Anyone with information is asked to call police.