The FBI will lead the investigation into the shooting of a customer during a robbery of a Royal Farms convenience store in Northeast Baltimore on Tuesday night. Police said the gunman demanded the customer's wallet and shot him as he reached for it.
Police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi said that the FBI's Violent Crime Task Force, which includes members of the city force, will take over the case. He said federal authorities are being called in to send a message "that violent crime will not be tolerated in Baltimore."
Authorities said that part of the reason for this move was because the victim was a bystander who was in the shop to buy food and got caught up in a violent altercation. The 46-year-old man, who has not been identified, was last reported in good condition at Johns Hopkins Hospital.
Police said that two masked men walked into the Royal Farms on Harford Road near Echodale Avenue about 9:40 p.m. Witnesses told police that one of the masked men, armed with a silver-colored handgun, walked behind the counter and took cash and cigarettes.
A police spokesman said the gunman then turned to the customer and shot him in the upper body after demanding his wallet.
Police said a $2,500 reward is being offered in the case.
Anyone with information is urged to call the FBI at 410-265-8080.