HOUSTON (KTRK) -- A violent scene is under investigation in southeast Houston.
Police and fire officials were called to a house in the 5000 block of Mallow at Noel where five people were shot during an robbery.
"It sounded like maybe .38. It was some big guns," witness Gary Phillips said. "It was consistent shots. Pow pow pow, six or seven times."
When the gun fire erupted, Phillips took cover.
"I was in the bathtub. I just laid down till gunshots stopped. Then I came outdoors," he said.
Police sources say gunmen ambushed the home looking to rob the men inside.
"All the chaos was like a robbery. They run in there and got the dope money," Phillips said.
Then a shootout, ending with five men shot. Three of them were killed and two were rushed to the hospital.
Emotions flared as family and friends showed up on scene.
"It's a known drug house; they sell pills and all kind of dope. It's been going on for years, just this time something hig happened," Phillips said.
Authorities confirm the home was known to be at the center of drug involvement. They say they're still searching for the four suspects who got away in a light gray 2011 Chevy Malibu.
Sources also are still trying to determine whether the two people at the hospital were victims or suspects in the robbery.