Police say William Jones, 33, tried to rob convenience store R&H Market with a toy gun and a note demanding cash on Thursday.
But store owner, Nihad Saah, had a gun too, and it was real - a .45-caliber Colt.
"He hesitated and turned his head, and that gave me the chance," Saah said. "I drew my gun and drew down on him.
"I didn't want to hurt him," Saah said.
"But I worked too hard for my money for somebody to just come in here and take it from me."
Saah said Jones ran outside and drove away as he shouted at him to stop. A customer helped write down the license plate number, and Saah called 911.
Police didn't have to search long. Jones walked back to the store less than 10 minutes later, police said. This time Saah didn't have to pull his gun.
"I guess he had a moment of realization that he wasn't going to get far," Saah said.
"He apologized, then he just stood up against the wall while I called the police again."
A police officer arrived and arrested him on a charge of attempted aggravated robbery.