WINSTON-SALEM, N.C.-- The Winston-Salem Police Chief Scott Cunningham says after weeks of investigation, he believes, Detective Michael Poe saved lives by shooting and killing an armed man who was attempting to rob Kevin Powell Motorsports earlier this month.
The Police Cheif released more details about the shooting Wednesday and said had Detective Michael Poe not been inside the store during the robbery, innocent customers and employees would have been shot.
Cunningham said evidence shows that the gunman, Connor Dallas, was trying to take over the store by forcing people into one area while pointing a pistol grip shotgun at their heads.
"This is not a small shotgun, this is a full-sized shotgun. The only difference is it doesn't have a long stock, it's got a pistol grip on it, " said Chief Cunningham.
While Connor was holding up people in the front of the store, Detective Poe, who was shopping while on his lunch break, saw what was happening from the back of the store without Connor noticing.
" Detective Poe conceals himself behind one of the 4x4's and draws his weapon. Assessing the situation he sees the robber is pointing the gun directly at people's heads," said the police chief. That's when Cunningham said Poe fired 8 shots at the suspect.
The gunman never fired but police said his shotgun was loaded with four 12 gauge rounds.
" I do believe he (Poe) reduced the danger, avoided additional injuries and most likely saved peoples lives by the actions he took in that situation," said Chief Cunningham.
Detective Poe is still on administrative leave as the S.B.I wraps up its investigation into the shooting.
Police said Dallas Connor was a convicted habitual felon and was out on bond after being charged with robberies in Asheville.