The tenant went to another room and retrieved a gun. By the time he returned, the two suspects had forced their way into the family's home.
"The family was inside calling the police," said Sgt. J.C. Padilla with the Houston Police Department. "They also pushed a loveseat next to the door to block it and they still managed to swing it open."
Police say one man pointed a gun at the tenant. The tenant opened fire, shooting the suspect in the chest.
Police say the wounded suspect ran outside, collapsed on the balcony and died.
Sgt. Padilla said, "There is a gun that's out there near the scene and also a long crowbar that they were using to pry the door open."
A second suspect got away. Police have no motive at this time. They say it's unclear why this apartment was targeted, since the family had nothing of particular value inside. Police say it's possible the suspects made a mistake, targeting the wrong apartment.
The family was unhurt and has been questioned by authorities. An investigation is underway.