A store owner is fighting for his life after he tried to scare off an armed robber by spraying him with a hose and was shot in the process.
The 50-year-old man, identified by family members as Le Poeng, was washing his car outside his store, the KCJ Deli on S. 54th and Delancey streets at 1:35 p.m. Saturday when he was approached by a robber armed with an AK-47, police said. When the robber tried to back him into his shop, Poeng, a father of three, sprayed him in the face with the hose.
"That's what the father is for," Poeng's brother told NBC10. "He tried to protect the children that was upstairs, as any father would do to protect the family and his three children."
The robber then opened fire, striking the store owner in the right side. The robber then fled west on Delancey Street.
The bullet went through the store owner’s stomach and exited out of his back. He was taken to Presbyterian Hospital where he remains in critical condition after several surgeries. Poeng's brother says he hasn't been able to communicate with him since the shooting.
"Please, please help this man out so he can come back to see his three kids," he said. "And pray for him. And whoever did this, just give up."
The gunman is described as a bald, black male standing 6-feet-tall and wearing a dark hoodie, ripped light blue jeans and white sneakers.
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"Obviously we believe he lives close by because he walked up on a beautiful day like this with an AK-47," said Philadelphia Police Lieutenant John Walker.
As police search for clues, customers are hoping Poeng makes a full recovery.
"Every time I come in the store he asked me about how the kids are doing," said Jerome Pacy, a customer. "How my newborn is doing. How my fiancée is doing and stuff like that."
"He doesn't deserve that, man. He didn't."
If you have any information on the shooting, please call Philadelphia Police.