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Thug holds gun to store clerk's head, steals cash. But after a better view of gun, the tables turn.

A robber was caught on surveillance video holding a gun to the head of a Family Dollar store clerk in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and stealing cash last month. But seconds later, the clerk noticed something strange about the gun, and then the tables turned. (Image source: KOB-TV video screenshot)

Iron bars cover every window at the Family Dollar store at Wyoming and Central in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

While they appear to be deterring overnight smash-and-grab robberies, there's little they can do to stem the tide of daytime crime.

Image source: KOB-TV video screenshot

The store was held up twice in June, KOB-TV reported, and surveillance video the station obtained shows the frightening way one incident began — and the heroic way it ended.

The clip shows a man in a black hoodie walking up to a register and pressing a gun to the temple of a store clerk that the station called "Devon" to protect his identity.

"He started counting back from five, and I'm just trying to stay my calmest and do what he says," Devon told KOB.

But when the crook reached "1," Devon told the station he winced — and nothing happened.

"And in my head, I'm thinking, 'Well, if he was going to do it, he would have already done it,'" he said to KOB.

Image source: KOB-TV video screenshot

So the thief grabbed the cash from Devon — and then is seen on the clip going up to a female clerk and pressing the gun to her head as well.

And that's when Devon spotted something strange about the gun.

"You know how they hold it ghetto? They tilt it," he told the station.

Image source: KOB-TV video screenshot

The sideways angle of the gun allowed Devon to see the bottom of the handle, which was hollow — no magazine inside, KOB noted.

Image source: KOB-TV video screenshot

Which in Devon's mind meant likely no bullets, the station said.

With that he quickly rushed the gunman, delivered a punch to his head and knocked him to the ground.

Image source: KOB-TV video screenshot

"It was all one motion," he told the station, "just turn, see and attack."

Image source: KOB-TV video screenshot

Devon is seen on the video wrestling with the gunman and continuing to punch him — fracturing his hand in the process, KOB reported.

Image source: KOB-TV video screenshot

Store employees told the station Devon kicked the gunman out of the store, so he's yet to be identified by police. But Devon said he's happy he was able to step in.

"It felt good honestly," Devon told KOB. "I mean, if he would have just asked nicely. Honestly [I] probably would have never hit him because I wouldn't have known the gun was empty."

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