At 8:32 p.m. Tuesday, officers responded to a report of a possible shooting inside of the Target located at 1040 Hanes Mall Boulevard.
Officers and Forsyth County deputies evacuated the store in search of possible shooting victims but did not find anyone injured. They did, however, find evidence of a struggle at the back of the store as well as damage that suggested a gun was fired.
A short time later, police say a 25-year-old man arrived at the hospital with injuries to his head and face. Police say his injuries were minor, and he has since been released from the hospital.
He told police he was in the store when three men approached him and began to attack him, hitting him multiple times in the face and head.
That’s when the victim pulled out a gun and fired one shot “to stop the suspects from assaulting him,” police said. The gunshot reportedly did not deter the attackers. They continued to hit him and took his gun before running out of the store.
The victim told police he drove home before going to a hospital.
“The investigation is still in the early stages but there is evidence that suggests this is not a random act of violence,” police said in a news release.
Officers offered descriptions of three suspects. All three were white men between the ages of 20 and 30. One suspect, described as heavy set with a reddish beard, was wearing a red T-shirt and black pants. The second was wearing a purple shirt that said “Fremont Ross” on the front, as well as tan khaki shorts. The third suspect, described as having a skinny build, was wearing a black T-shirt with a multi-color design on the front, as well as Carolina blue shorts and black sneakers.
The attackers were last seen leaving the front door of the Target and getting into a small, white, four-door mid-size or hatchback-style vehicle. The vehicle may have an Ohio license plate.