VAN NUYS (CBS) — A gas station clerk remained hospitalized in critical condition Thursday after being dragged by a car during a possible robbery.

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Jorge Grimaldi got into a verbal altercation with a customer at an Arco station in Van Nuys just before 11 p.m. Friday evening.

Grimaldi, 51, stood in front of the man’s car in an effort to keep him from leaving the gas station.

Security video shows that Grimaldi grabbed onto the hood of the man’s red Camry and held on for dear life for the next half mile. After falling off the hood, Grimaldi suffered a serious head injury.

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Police are now were stepping up their search for the driver, who they say is not a suspect. He is described as a 250-pound black man in his 30s or 40s. He has salt-and-pepper hair and the Camry reportedly has a partial license of 6SNL.

KCAL9 spoke exclusively with Grimaldi’s son and daughter, who were too afraid to show their faces, but they didn’t stop from lashing out at the man who plowed his car into their father.

They say the man tried to steal something from their father, who stood in front of his car to keep him from fleeing.

“My dad is a great guy. He didn’t deserve this. He’s not a bad person,” his 15-year-old daughter says.

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His 22-year-old son was circumspect. “I’m the only man in the house, so right now, I need to be working as hard as he was.”