Around 1:45 a.m., investigators say three men burst into 31-year-old Christopher Mitchell's home and tried to rob him.
Mitchell ran from the house and was shot as he fled.
He next ran to a neighbor's home - who happens to be a sheriff's deputy - for help. The deputy called 911.
"A gentleman was beating on some doors out there. Of course, the people at two in the morning aren't sure what's going on themselves. It turns out one of them did call 911 for help," said Fayetteville police spokesman Dan Grubb.
When police arrived, they found Mitchell shot in the hip.
A woman in Mitchell's house at the time of the shooting was not hurt.
Mitchell was taken to Cape Fear Valley Medical Center for treatment.
Police were looking for clues to the identity of the three men who had their faces partially covered. Detectives say it's not clear what was taken from Mitchell's home.
The incident has neighbors on edge.
"I just try to get up and make sure I can see what's going on because you don't never know if it's your home and evidently it could be very close to you," offered neighbor Jeff Tew.