A gas station attendant was found shot dead behind the counter of the Long Island business where he worked Wednesday, police say.
A customer discovered the attendant on the ground and unresponsive at the BP gas station on Jericho Turnpike in Jericho at about 9 p.m., according to the Nassau County Police Department.
Police and EMS workers were called to the gas station and the 56-year-old man, identified as Hany Awad of Levittown, was pronounced dead at the scene. The attendant had apparently been shot in the torso, police say.
It's not clear why Awad was killed, police say, but the case is being investigated as a homicide.
Will Alaimo, who runs a motel across the street, knew Awad.
"He was always such a nice gentleman," he said. "He always had a smile on his face. Now he's gone for no reason."
Business owners in the area said they thought easy access to highways and parkways make it alluring for criminals.
"They can get right on the L.I.E. over there, and they're gone," said Alaimo.
Police officials urged business owners in a news conference to always comply with robbers who show a gun.
The gas station was closed Thursday morning while police investigated the shooting. Detectives are looking into whether it's connected to other gas station robberies in Hyde Park and Thomaston, which happened within minutes of each other on Monday.
Anyone with information on the shooting is asked to call Nassau County Crime Stoppers at 1-800-244-TIPS.
-- Katherine Creag contributed to this story.