Fort Worth ice cream man in critical condition after robbery attempt

A Fort Worth man is in critical condition after he was shot while pushing his ice cream cart on a hot day.

The shooting happened Wednesday at a Fort Worth apartment complex in the Las Vegas Trail area where neighbors say he made a stop every day.

Fort Worth police are now looking for two men they say shot the ice cream man in a robbery attempt.

On a day with a scorching 96 degree high, Rubin Martinez was committed to doing what he did every day.

“When the kids get out of school, he comes and he parks his van,” said resident Jaleb Jewel. “He pulls his cart out. He walks around every day when the kids get out of school. Some kids, they don’t have enough money. He gives them free ice cream all the time.”

On Wednesday afternoon just before 5 p.m., Fort Worth PD says Martinez was shot at the Manitoba Apartment Complex. Jewel says it happened in the parking lot near the front building where he saw crime scene tape blocking off the area for most of Wednesday evening.

“It hurts honestly,” Jewel said. “And it’s sad.”

Martinez was struck twice and taken to a nearby hospital for treatment.

Witnesses told police two men were seen fleeing from the scene after shots were fired. Investigators believe they were attempting to steal from Martinez before they shot him.

“You can imagine he probably doesn’t hold much money on him anyways if he is pushing around for ice cream for a living,” Jewel said. “Why would somebody wanna do that to a man that nice?”

Don Harris says Martinez always had a smile on his face. And while he didn’t know much English, he was always picking up new phrases.

The property manager for the complex declined to comment but sent out a letter to residents offering to give them free locks after the shooting.

Jewel says he’ll be worried about his family’s safety until police find out who shot their neighborhood ice cream man.

“Somebody that all of us know got shot. We don’t know if he’s gonna live,” Jewel said. “And now we’re scared for our own lives and our own place where we live. We should feel safe.”

Police say the two men might be teenagers. Investigators are now searching for any video that may have captured the shooting and provide any leads on the two suspects.