Good Samaritan shot while trying to stop gas station robbery

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Police are investigating a shooting outside a southwest Atlanta gas station early Wednesday morning. 

Investigators said bullets fired back and forth between a trio of robbers and a Good Samaritan who was trying to protect their intended target. The dangerous encounter happened just after 1 a.m. outside of the Texaco on Martin Luther King Junior Drive near Peyton Place.

Police told FOX 5 News a customer pulled up to get some gas and saw something sinister while at the pump.

"He observed three guys get out of a white sedan and attempt to rob a guy on the corner. He grabbed his own firearm and went to stop the men from robbing the other citizen," explained Atlanta Police Captain Brian Schiffbaeuer.

The Good Samaritan ended up being shot at least five times. Medics rushed him to the hospital.

Police said the trio of robbers sped off in a white sedan.

A handgun and modified AK-47 were left at the scene, as well as at least 20 rounds of evidence. 

Police have not been able to find the original robbery victim. The Good Samaritan is in stable condition at Grady Memorial Hospital. 

Area residents stopped by the gas station throughout the day to check on the employees.  Jason Dobbs said his thoughts were with the Good Samaritan and his family.

"My heart goes out to the family.  It breaks my heart you know. There are good people on this earth and bad people on this earth. It is just mind-blowing," said resident Jason Dobbs.