Suspected shoplifter shoots Indianapolis shoe store employee

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A suspected shoplifter shot an employee at a northwest Indianapolis shoe store Friday night.

Police say Nicolas Atwood of Seymour, tried to steal a pair of shoes at the Shoe Carnival in the 4600 block of Lafayette Road around 9:30 p.m. Friday. A loss prevention officer caught the suspect and handcuffed Atwood to a chair in a back room while the store staff notified IMPD.

A short time later, a commotion erupted in the back room and the suspect said he had a gun and fired a shot at an employee, Johnny Ross. The employee was hit in the chest and transported to Methodist Hospital where he is in serious, but stable, condition.

Atwood ran to the front of the store, still handcuffed to the chair, but found the doors locked. He ran to the back of the store and escaped through the back door.

An off-duty police officer who was working security at another location responded and called for backup. A K-9 officer tracked the suspect and bit him near the store.

The suspect was taken into custody and faces preliminary charge of theft.

Five employees were in the store at the time of the shooting, but there were no customers.