PALM BAY, Fla. - Palm Bay police said they were forced to shoot an armed robber late Tuesday night when the masked man entered a Walgreens on Malabar Road and held a pharmacist at gunpoint.
The robbery was in progress when officers arrived, and police said they shot Kenneth Kirwan, 20, as he tried to run away.
"I saw the guy peeking around the corner with the white mask on his face and he backed up, and then next thing I know, he walked in and I said, 'He's going to rob them,' and so my fiancé called 911," said witness, who did not want to be identified.
Kenyetta Booker said she was inside trying to get a prescription filled. She said the robber was after more than cash.
"All I saw was the cashier, whose face was white like a ghost, and I seen the man with a mask on his face, and the cashier said to the pharmacist, 'Hey, he wants some oxycodone," Booker said. "All I kept thinking about was just making it to that front door."
San Fillipo Drive was closed at Malabar Road as police processed evidence.
Kirwan had to be flown to the hospital as a trauma alert, police said. He is in critical condition.
The Florida Department of Law Enforcement is investigating the shooting, which is protocol any time an officer fires their gun.