By: Amanda Ober
(WESH) WINTER GARDEN, Fla. —A clerk who works at a Hess gas station in Winter Garden surely considers himself pretty lucky after his cellphone stopped a bullet from entering his torso.
Winter Garden authorities are searching for the man they said shot a convenience store employee after the employee was unable to open the store's safe.
Winter Garden police say around 4:45 a.m. Monday, an armed man entered the Hess on West Colonial Drive and asked a clerk to help him locate a certain beverage.
The suspect then pulled out a revolver and ordered the clerk to open the safe, police said.
According to authorities, two workers were unable to open the safe. The suspect fired a single round as he left the store, striking one of the workers in the abdomen, a release said.
Police said it wasn’t until they were interviewing the clerk that he started to complain of feeling chest pain
"The clerk said, 'I feel like my chest hurts.' That’s when medical personnel started looking at him, realized the guy had actually shot at him, hit him, and the cell phone had stopped his bullet," said Winter Garden police Lt. Scott Allen.
The screen was shattered and embedded with a bullet.
"I've seen individuals get shot with low-caliber handguns and I've seen it be life ending. So for this gentleman to be as lucky as he is, it's a good day for us," said Winter Garden police Lt. Scott Allen.
The clerk was taken to the hospital to be checked out but was quickly released. The second clerk was not harmed.
The suspect is described as a black man standing 6 feet tall, wearing a dark-colored hooded sweatshirt, pants, sunglasses, a bright yellow traffic vest and white gloves.
He was last seen walking on foot eastbound toward South Vineland Road.
Anyone with information is asked to call Crimeline at 800-423-TIPS.
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