The 21-year-old man threatened a gas station operator in Wiener Neustadt around 10pm on Thursday evening.
After buying a packet of cigarettes he allegedly pulled what police now believe was a replica handgun out of his backpack and said “this is a robbery, give me your money”.
One of the two replica weapons used by the fugitive. Photo: Police
The female employee fled and hid behind the gas pumps and the robber appeared to lose his nerve – leaving without any money.
However, the woman was able to remember part of his license plate number and the colour of his car, and called the police.
Several police cars pursued the man down highway 17, to Neunkirchen. He ignored their requests to stop, but one police car finally managed to block his path.
Police say that he pointed the gun at them and refused to drop his weapon, getting out of the car with the gun in his hand. Police then shot him, several times, and he died despite efforts by an emergency doctor to revive him.
The public prosecutor at Wiener Neustadt has ordered an autopsy. The police operation will now be investigated by a team from the Directorate of Public Security.
The dead man was found to have two weapons – the one that he allegedly pointed at the police and another gun which was found in his car under the driver’s seat.
It’s now thought that both weapons were replicas – one an Airsoft gun, and the other a gas pistol, which police believed were real handguns, said police spokesman Johann Baumschlager.