ST. LOUIS (KMOV) – Police said a man wearing a red mask tried to rob an Asian market in south St. Louis, but fled after the owner scared him off with a gun.
Authorities said the suspect on Wednesday walked into the Asian World Market in the 3100 block of Cherokee around 9 a.m. while carrying a white bag.
Police said he got a gun out and told Sandy Maniphonh, who was working behind the front counter, to put money in the bag.
Maniphonh said she agreed to give him the money and turned. That’s when she grabbed a gun of her own and tried to shoot the suspect, but it would not discharge because it was locked.
The suspect then ran from the store. As he was fleeing south on Minnesota, he fired two shots at the Maniphonh, but missed.
No injuries were reported.
Maniphonh, whose owned the store for over 21 years with her husband, said it wasn’t the first time she’s been forced to brandish a gun. She said that’s why she’s prepared.
“I be careful any minute. I’m still myself, but my store’s too small and I don’t have enough money to pay workers,” she said.
Authorities continue to search for the suspect, who is described as a black male with a thin build. In addition to the mask, he was also wearing a blue-hooded sweatshirt, dark, pants, dark shoes and brown gloves.