17-year-old killed in shootout with holdup suspect at convenience store on Houston's southside

Eight customers and employees became hostages at the store on Scott St. when a man armed with two guns entered Monday night.

Charly Edsitty Image
Tuesday, September 28, 2021
Teen killed in shootout may have been trying to save hostages
Police are trying to piece together the tense hostage situation involving a gunman at a store on Houston's south side. A teen whose friends were being held may have been trying to save those inside the store when he was killed.

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- A 17-year-old is dead after a shootout with a holdup suspect involving multiple hostages at a convenience store on Scott Street Monday night.

Someone inside the store, located in the 9600 block of Scott Street on Houston's southside, activated a panic button around 10 p.m. Monday, which then alerted police that something was happening.

When Houston police arrived at the store, they found the possible suspect inside with two pistols. He dropped the weapons when officers showed up, surrendered to police and was taken into custody.

That suspect was later identified as 47-year-old Al Vernon Brown, according to authorities.

Officers also found a 17-year-old outside of the store with a gunshot wound.

Officers began to perform first aid, but the teen later died at the hospital.

There were three employees and five customers inside the store at the time of the shooting, police said.

Investigators say it all started when Brown entered the store with the two guns and started to yell at the customers and store employees.

He reportedly told everyone inside to get on the ground and lock the doors.

That's when they believe the teen entered the store and demanded that Brown release everyone. He also had a pistol, which he pointed at Brown, police said.

"At some point in time, our victim entered the store, and he also had a firearm. It appears there was an exchange of gunfire between the two that resulted in the victim being struck and later pronounced [dead]," Lt. Christopher Bruce said.

Police said that when the teen pointed his pistol at Brown, the suspect fired one gun at the teen and the other gun towards one of the hostages.

The teenage victim was shot in the chest, but ran outside of the store before collapsing, investigators said.

It is unclear if any of the hostages were injured.

Brown has been charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and has pending charges of murder and aggravated assault of a police officer.

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