ST. LOUIS — What started as an attempt to rob a woman of her purse, ended with a victim and the suspects shooting at each other in Tower Grove South.

A 26-year-old woman told police it all started when she got out of her car at 12:48 a.m. Sunday. She said one man pointed a gun at her while another man tried to take her purse off her shoulder, but she refused, which led to a struggle.

The woman started screaming, which caught the attention of a 48-year-old man in the neighborhood. He came over and confronted the men who were trying to rob the woman—and it worked. The men dropped her purse and ran toward a red car.

But while they were running away, one of the men fired shots at the man who came to help. He pulled out his own gun and returned fire.

No one was injured and the would-be robbers got away.

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Two cars that were parked in the neighborhood were damaged during the shootings.

The victims described one of the suspects as being between 19 and 25 years old with a thin build. He was wearing a red t-shirt, a black hoodie and black pants. The other suspect was wearing a dark-colored hoodie.

Police are investigating the shooting as a robbery, assault and destruction of private property.

The investigation is ongoing.

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