ST. PAUL — After two armed men confronted a man in his St. Paul garage and pistol-whipped him, his 9-year-old daughter pleaded with them to not shoot her father, police said Thursday, Sept. 19.

One of the suspects grabbed the girl’s head, and put his hand over her mouth and a gun to her head Wednesday morning, said Sgt. Mike Ernster, St. Paul police spokesman.

The suspects ended up running away from the residence in the West Seventh Street area.

Police found the 28-year-old covered in blood with a laceration to his forehead when they responded to View Street and Jefferson Avenue, near Palace Park, shortly after 9 a.m. Wednesday.

The man told police the suspects were trying to take his children. Police reports didn’t indicate the suspects made any demands and it’s unclear what their motives were, according to Ernster.

Heading to school, then violence

The children had just gotten in the car because their father was taking them to school. He opened the garage door and noticed a garbage can was knocked down, blocking his way out.

He got out to move the can and was suddenly attacked from behind by a man who hit him in the head with a handgun and pointed the gun at him, according to police.

The man pleaded with the suspects and told them his children were in the car. His daughter exited the car when she realized he was being assaulted and told them not to shoot her dad.

After releasing the girl, the suspects fled, and police did not find them.