CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police released 911 calls from a violent armed robbery at an east Charlotte Family Dollar that left the store manager hospitalized with gunshot wounds.
"I was shopping in the Family Dollar and someone started shooting," said one caller. "I heard two shots, I just left my buggy and I ran out the back exit."
Police released images of the two gunmen. They are described as one in his late-40s to early-50s, wearing a brown leather jacket and toboggan; the other was last seen wearing a black hoodie and tan pants.
The store was back open for business Wednesday. Regular customers like Michael Wood couldn't believe the news about Laney.
"This is getting a little close to home-- really close. We're associates; we see each other, we laugh, will joke with him, he jokes with me, I get my shopping done and he says man get back here soon and I always do," he said. "He's a good person."
Employees say this isn't the first robbery. Donna Wingo says she had a close call a few months ago when she was robbed at gunpoint while on the job.
"I lost my son last year to gun violence, so the first thing that popped in my head was I hope this isn't my time. Being that I have grandkids and kids to live for, I wasn't ready to die," she said.
Wingo says she returned to work immediately after that incident, but she has reservations now.
"We've been asking for off-duty officers or some type of help or protection because this happens not only at night but also in the daytime," she said.
Customer Michael Woods, who is also a security guard, says he doesn't see any security in the store.
"A lot of people that come in here know them and we'll protect them if we have to, but not enough security to stay with them from open to close," he said.
NBC Charlotte reached out to Family Dollar for comment, but our calls were not returned.
Anyone with information about this incident is asked to call Crime Stoppers immediately at 704-334-1600.
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