The suspects entered the store at 150 W Fletcher Avenue around 8:30 p.m. and started stuffing bags with groceries, the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office said. When an employee confronted the men for trying to leave the store without paying, one suspect pulled out a shotgun and threatened the worker.
The suspects fled in a getaway car with two other people who were waiting outside and sped away, according to authorities.
Minutes later, two deputies spotted the speeding car and, without knowing the suspects had just robbed a store, attempted to pull over the vehicle, the sheriff's office said.
The suspects fired a shotgun through their vehicle’s back window at the deputies. The deputies pulled over to check for injuries and the suspects got away. Neither deputy was injured in the incident.
"I'm grateful that our deputies and the employees at the Save A Lot were not harmed by these reckless and dangerous criminals," said Sheriff Chad Chronister. "I urge anyone with information to please contact the Sheriff's Office so that we may get these suspects off the street."
Authorities described the two suspects who entered the store as Hispanic males with short, dark hair and thin builds. Both men have face tattoos.
The suspect vehicle was a late 90s to early 2000s maroon Buick with dark-tinted windows. It is believed the car may have a damaged right rear quarter panel and damage to its rear window.
Authorities asked anyone with information about the incident to contact the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office.