Florence police officer kills robbery suspect

      FLORENCE, S.C. (AP) - Authorities say a Florence police officer has shot and killed a man who had just robbed a gas station.

      Police Chief Allen Heidler said an officer saw someone robbing the Cruizers gas station on U.S. Highway 76 near downtown Florence around 9:30 p.m. Monday.

      Heidler says the officer confronted the robber as he walked out of the station, then shot the man after the suspect pointed his gun at the officer.

      Florence County Coroner Keith von Lutcken said 27-year-old Patrick Small died a short time later at the hospital.

      The State Law Enforcement Division is investigating the shooting.

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