KNIGHTDALE, N.C. (WNCN) — A man who told police he was trying to stop a fleeing robbery suspect at a Knightdale ABC store has been cited for firing his gun in the air in the parking lot.

The man, who CBS 17 is not identifying because he has not yet been charged, told police he fired two shots in the air outside the ABC store located at 704 Money Court as it was being robbed, reports say.

The robbery happened around 4:25 p.m. when the suspect entered the store and placed items on the counter as if to make a purchase, Knightdale police said.

As the cashier rang up the items and opened the register, the suspect reached over the counter and into the register and grabbed money.

The suspect then fled the store in a tan Yukon SUV with an undisclosed amount of money.

No one was injured and the suspect did not have a weapon, police said.

According to a store employee, the customer fired shots into the air and then got into his vehicle and left. She was able to get a photo of his license plate, which is how police were able to get in contact with him.

Police contacted the man and asked him to return to the ABC store to speak with them, but he initially refused.

According to police, after speaking with a lieutenant, the man agreed to come back and explain what happened.

The man told police he was just trying to help and didn’t mean to cause any harm.

According to a police report, an officer told the man while they know he was trying to help, “the shots…would have to come down somewhere” and that “he can not shoot at fleeing suspect[s] and sometimes it is just better to be a witness.”

The customer has a concealed carry permit.

Police cited him for going armed to the terror of the people and seized a Glock 9mm, one holster, one magazine and 13 rounds of 9mm ammunition.

Around 10:30 p.m. Saturday, Bryan Keith Mullen, 40, was spotted in the tan Yukon on John Winstead Road near Louisburg, a Sunday afternoon news release from ABC officials said.

Mullen was taken into custody by a deputy from the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office.

He is charged with common law robbery.

“Remember (when) that shot goes up, what does it have to do? Comes back down,” said retired New York Police Department officer Robert Young. “When that bullet comes down, if it hits somebody, you’re killing them.”

Young said shots should only be fired if someone is fearing for their life or someone else’s. In this case, police said the robbery suspect wasn’t armed.

“Know what you can and can’t do with that firearm at all times because that firearm is the ultimate weapon,” Young said. “You can take someone’s life in a nanosecond.”

Young also explained that the business didn’t allow firearms on the property and that the gun owner should have stayed on scene after firing the shots.