CHICAGO
10/14/2011 10:41 am ET Updated Dec 13, 2011

Perry Pearce Wrestles Gun From Home Intruders, Shooting One (VIDEO)

A city worker was able to fight off two men who broke into his South Side home Thursday, wrestling a gun away from one of them and shooting a suspect as they tried robbing him.

Police say Perry Pearce, a Chicago Water Department employee, was leaving his house for work around 6:45 a.m. when two armed men approached him, having apparently snuck in through a hole in Pearce's fence, NBC Chicago reports.

“They cut a hole in the fence and stuck me up. One had a .38 and the other had a 9 mm," Pearce told the Chicago Sun-Times. “They held me on the ground, outside for 20 minutes with a gun in my face and knocked me in the face with the gun.”

Police say that the men eventually forced Pearce inside and demanded to be taken to his safe, according to WGN Radio. When one of the men tried to open the safe, a struggle ensued, and Pearce fired a shot, hitting one of the two men in the abdomen, at which point they both fled.

Police found the man who had been shot collapsed a few blocks away, and he was taken to the hospital, the Sun-Times reports.

Following a similar robbery attempt eight months ago, Pearce, who has lived in the neighborhood for 30 years, installed video surveillance cameras, friend Leonard Morrow told NBC. Police are reviewing the footage.

Neighbors applauded Pearce and called him a hero when he left his home later that day, WGN reports.

"You’d better believe he did the right thing," longtime neighbor Pearl Rivers told the Sun-Times. "This is Englewood and they play for keeps over here.”