WAURIKA, OK (KSWO) - Waurika police are looking for a man who tried to rob a truck stop in Waurika overnight on Tuesday. It happened at JW's Travel Stop just after midnight and was caught on surveillance video.
The video shows a suspect pulling a gun on an employee who was outside taking a break. Not only did he point a gun at him, but after the would-be robber got spooked and ran outside, he shot at the worker as he was running after him. The bullet hit less than two feet from where the employee was standing.
Jeremie Wilson, who is also the Jefferson County Sheriff, watched the surveillance footage and said his store employee handled the situation well.
"He was smooth and did what the guy said and walked slowly," Wilson said. "He found that opportunity when he walked around the corner and saw the off-duty officer to tell him what was going on which you couldn't ask for better than that. I don't call it coincidence, I think it's a little bit of intervention from the good Lord above."
Justin Winslett, Waurika's assistant police chief said they're lucky an off-duty officer was there.
"I believe if he wasn't in here, he would've went through with the robbery," Winslett said.
Wilson is glad that his employee is okay, but said it's upsetting that someone would hold his employee at gunpoint.
"They're like family, they work for you, you get to know them all these years and they're here for me so when something like that happens I take that personal," he said.
Because Wilson is sheriff, he's letting the Waurika Police Department handle the investigation. Winslett said they searched for the suspect for around five hours but weren't able to find him.
Since he got away, Wilson is worried something like this could happen again in the area.
"If they're going to shoot at someone, and hold someone at gunpoint, they're going to do it again," Wilson said. "They've got their mind made up of that's how they're going to get what they want. Fortunately, they were foiled, they didn't get that opportunity here, but the question is, when and where are they going to do it again?"
Wilson said his department is going to be vigilant in preventing these types of crimes through Waurika and the whole county. The police department is still in the early stages of the investigation, but they ask that you call the Waurika Police Department if you know anything about this.