A news crew security guard shot dead during an attempted roberry


San Francisco Bay

A security guard was killed after being shot while protecting a television news team investigating a smash-and-grab heist in the San Francisco Bay Area, part of a surge of organized retail crime in the region.

"We are devastated by the loss of the security guard and our friend, Kevin Nishita. Our deepest sympathy goes to Kevin's wife, his children, his family, and to all his friends and colleagues," Jim Rose, vice president, and general manager of KRON-TV said in a statement released on Saturday.

Nishita worked for Star Protection Agency as an armed guard, protecting television news crews in the region, who are frequently targeted by robberies for their equipment.

On Wednesday, he was wounded in the abdomen during an attempted robbery of KRON-camera TV's equipment in downtown Oakland, according to authorities.

The television team was reporting a recent theft in which a bunch of robbers stormed into a clothes store and took merchandise.

A $32,500 reward is being offered for information leading to an arrest in Nishita's death.

Nishita worked as a police officer in Hayward, San Jose, and Colma until retiring in 2018. According to the Alameda County Sheriff's Office, his body was taken from the hospital with full police enforcement honors.

"This senseless loss of life is due to yet another violent criminal activity in the Bay Area. We hope that offering a reward will help lead to the arrest of those responsible so they can face justice for this tragedy," Rose said.

Organized retail robberies have hit the region, with bands of criminals breaking into high-end establishments and stealing stuff with crowbars and hammers.

Similar thefts have been recorded in Los Angeles, Beverly Hills, and other cities around the country.

According to the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department, at least eight criminals entered a Home Depot store in Lakewood on Black Friday and stole hammers, crowbars, and sledgehammers from the tool area before fleeing in a getaway car.

According to police Lt. Giovanni Trejo, four people who may have participated in the Home Depot theft were later arrested in Beverly Hills after officers stopped two cars that were part of a caravan of vehicles driving around the city's business district. According to him, a passerby alerted police after noticing that several of the vehicles lacked registration plates.

Meantime, police in Los Angeles arrested three people suspected of storming a designer clothing store on Melrose Place after stopping a vehicle and seeing clothes in plain view, said LAPD Officer Mike Lopez. He said more than 10 people ransacked another store on La Brea Avenue.

The thefts are believed to be part of sophisticated criminal networks that recruit people to steal merchandise in stores throughout the country and then sell it online. Experts and law enforcement officials say the thefts are ratcheting up as the holiday shopping season gets underway.

Publish : 2021-11-28 11:34:00

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