LANCASTER (CBS)  — A man was shot to death this afternoon during a robbery of a computer store in Lancaster.

The shooting was reported at 4 p.m. near Avenue K and 20th Street West, said Lt. Kent Kroeger of the Lancaster sheriff’s station.

The victim, whose name was not immediately released, was pronounced dead at the scene, Kroeger said. It is believed the man was the owner of the store. Early reports said a clerk was the victim.

Roger Smith rushed to the store after he heard about the shooting. He came to mourn one of his best friends. “I don’t think we can replace this man,” he said. Friends of the deceased told us he was a computer wizard who should have worked for the Pentagon.

Sgt. Magdalena Lane of the LA County Sheriff’s department said, “We did have multiple shots and we did have some witnesses inside.”

The suspect, who was wearing a dark hoodie and a ski mask, fled in a dark-colored sedan, according to witnesses.

One witness, Raquel Gascon, was eating at a neighboring Thai restaurant. She said the suspect had “one of those carry on bags. Type of luggage. You know, the type you can roll. And he had a little backpack and he was just walking. He was maybe six feet, slender.”

(UPDATE: 10 p.m.) Late Friday, police said they had a suspect barricaded inside his house in the 43000 block of Grange Street in Lancaster.

Police kept neighbors from entering or leaving the area for fear that bullets could start flying.

(©2012 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)

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