A Chicago convenience store clerk and an armed robber shot and killed one another during a botched holdup, police said.
The deadly shootout took place Friday evening inside the El Barakah Supermarket in the South Shore neighborhood, killing would-be robber Nicholas Williams, 24, and 63-year-old clerk Ali Hassan, the Cook County Medical Examiner’s Office said.
Williams entered the store on 73rd Street at around 6:20 p.m. and produced a handgun in an attempt to rob the business, but Hassan, who had a concealed carry permit, pulled a gun from his waistband and shot Williams in the chest, police confirmed to The Post.
Williams returned fire and shot the store worker in the chest and back.
The robbery suspect then fled the store but collapsed about a block away and died, according to police.
Hassan, a Palestinian immigrant living in the suburb of Berwyn, was rushed to University of Chicago Medical Center and was pronounced dead from his injuries within the hour.
Two other people who were inside the store at the time of the shootout were not hurt, police said.
Three guns were recovered at the scene, among them Hassan and Williams’ firearms, and a third weapon that was behind the counter at the store.
Family members said Hassan leaves behind a wife and five children between the ages of 10 and 22, reported Chicago Sun-Times.
Relatives described Hassan as a family man who was well-respected in the community.
“He’s the most standup guy, caring guy,” his nephew Khalid Hassan told ABC 7 Chicago. “If you were around him, he always had good energy, always a positive individual.”
Longtime South Shore resident Mallory Jones told CBS Chicago that Hassan ran the store with such compassion for the community that many had come to view him as a family member.
“When they first opened that store, I bring my boys down here,” Ellis said. “I was trying to pay for their stuff. He told me, ‘You don’t have to pay for that.’”