Police say a man walking his dog opened fire on two men who tried to rob him at gunpoint Wednesday night.
DeKalb County Police said that the 44-year-old man was walking his dog on the street where he lives, in the Oaks of Wellborn subdivision in Lithonia, around 10:30 p.m. when a white, Lexus SUV pulled up next to him. One man got out of the SUV and started asking him about his dog, according to the police report. Police said another man then got out of the SUV, at least one of them pulled a gun, and the two tried to rob the victim.
The victim said that he acted as if he was going to give the men his wallet, but instead reached into his waistband and pulled out a gun. He shot one of the suspects and the other ran away. The SUV driver drove away.
A woman who lives nearby drove past the incident while on the phone with her mother--who also lives nearby. The mother told 11Alive News Thursday that she heard several gunshots over the phone, and then heard her daughter screaming.
"She was like, 'Oh my God! Oh my God,'" the woman said. "I thought she was the one who got shot...And I came around the corner and that's when I saw the young man laying out on the ground."
When police arrived at the scene, they found one of the suspects in the street with at least one gunshot wound. He died at Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta.
“It is looking as if it was self-defense, and the victim, the dog owner, was justified in shooting the suspect," said Shiera Campbell of DeKalb County Police.
The investigation is ongoing. Authorities are reviewing nearby homeowners' security cameras for clues.
Police are still searching for the two suspects who got away -- the one who ran from the scene and the driver of the SUV. That SUV is described as a white Lexus with Florida plates. Police are also trying to identify all three suspects, including the young man who was killed