San Francisco security guard Kevin Nishita, who worked security for KRON-TV news crews, was shot in the abdomen at the scene of a smash and grab robbery on Wednesday. Police say a lone assailant was responsible.
Nishita, a former San Francisco policeman, died of his wounds on Saturday.
Nishita was protecting the tens of thousands of dollars of camera and audio equipment being used by the crew who were covering a looting incident as 12 thieves wearing masks and hoods raided a clothing store.
“We are devastated by the loss of 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,” KRON-TV’s vice president and general manager, Jim Rose, said in a statement issued Saturday.
A reward of $32,500 is being offered for information that leads to an arrest in Nishita’s killing.
“This senseless loss of life is due to yet another violent criminal act 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 terrible tragedy,” Rose said.
The region has been struck by organized retail thefts in which bands of thieves, some carrying crowbars and hammers, break into high-end stores and snatch merchandise.
Kevin was genuine, humble and always did the job with a smile on his face.
He was our private security guard that kept our team and numerous other Bay Area reporters safe while our in the field.
Kevin will be missed. https://t.co/j3KyaTBWn4
— Camila Barco (@cbarcotv) November 27, 2021
A reporter covering the story was not injured, but a bystander was hit by a ricochet and is in stable condition in the hospital.
Someone was bound to get hurt or killed as the looters are running wild in the city. The looters have been taking shots at the police and others during their getaways.
“Last weekend, the City of Oakland was inundated with armed roving caravans who targeted dozens of businesses, including pharmacies, retail shops, and a large number of cannabis operations,” a statement from the police department said.
“Individuals within the caravans are heavily armed and have exchanged gunfire with armed security employed by some of the cannabis businesses. Individuals within the caravans also fired multiple rounds at OPD officers responding to a burglary in progress early Monday morning.”
One of the more insipid justifications for the robberies is that no one is getting hurt and insurance companies will pay for the thefts anyway.
Guess that situation has sort of changed, hasn’t it?