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An Attleboro police sergeant on patrol provided life-saving aid to a gas station clerk who flagged her down just after he was shot during an attempted robbery early Monday morning, according to Attleboro Police Chief Kyle Heagney .

The clerk, who is now in stable condition at Rhode Island Hospital, was out of surgery Monday morning, he said.

“It was probably less than a minute that she was on scene after the incident,” Heagney said.

“It was very fortunate for the clerk she was in the area.”

Police are searching for the suspect who shot the clerk around 2:30 a.m. at the Mobil gas station on Newport Avenue, near the Pawtucket, R.I., line, Heagney said.

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The gas station’s clerk was emptying out the trash containers near the pumps when the suspect, wearing gray sweatpants and a cotton mask with the image of a gorilla’s face printed on it, approached the clerk.

The suspect brandished a gun and demanded money, Heagney said.

The two fought and during the struggle, the clerk was able to pull the suspect’s mask off. He later told police that the suspect was a black man with dreadlocks, Heagney said.

The suspect fired, and the clerk suffered a gunshot wound to his abdomen, he said.

Heagney described the wound as “traumatic and very serious.”

After the shooting, the suspect fled on foot toward Pawtucket, Heagney said.

After the clerk flagged down the Attleboro police sergeant, she immediately rendered aid to the clerk and called for additional units, he said.

Officers from Attleboro, Providence, Pawtucket, and Seekonk, as well as Massachusetts State Police troopers, responded to the scene, Heagney said.

The clerk was lucid, and was able to speak with officers before he was transported by an Attleboro Fire Department ambulance to the hospital, he said.

Heagney asked anyone with information to contact police.

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John Hilliard can be reached at john.hilliard@globe.com.