The likes of flash-mob-style looting incidents have been taking place across the United States in the days leading up to Thanksgiving, and throughout the Black Friday weekend, one such incident led to a California security guard being murdered as he tried protecting a news crew covering one of the lootings.
One of the looting incidents occurred on November 26th, Black Friday, at a Lakewood, California, Home Depot location. A group of approximately eight suspects stole roughly $400 worth of hammers, crowbars, and other tools.
Luis Romo, one of the employees of the Home Depot that was targeted, said that they “tried to stop them” but that the miscreants began wielding “sledgehammers” and implied that “whoever got in the way, they were going to hurt them.”
On November 24th, five suspects reportedly took off with approximately $25,000 worth of merchandise from a Nordstrom location in Los Angeles. Two days later, in L.A.’s Beverly Grove section, a group of looters targeted a Bottega Veneta and used some sort of chemical irritant against someone who tried thwarting their criminal efforts.
In San Francisco on November 24th, a group of thieves aged between 14 to 18-years-old targeted an Apple store in broad daylight, stealing roughly $20,000 worth of merchandise. Days later, in Monterey, a Sunglass Hut was also ripped off of roughly $30,000 worth of products by four suspects.
These sorts of robberies have spread throughout the nation, to include Chicago, where authorities noted an instance where a group of suspects hurled a cinderblock through a Canada Goose location and looted the shop for goods during the early morning hours of November 25th. The likes of a Foot Locker, North Face, and cellphone store were also hit in Chicago in a similar fashion.
Meanwhile, in Minnesota, two Best Buy locations were recently targeted by looters as well – one in Burnsville and another in Maplewood.
But among the most tragic of these incidents transpired in Oakland, California, on November 24th, where retired San Jose Police Officer Kevin Nishita, who was working as a security guard, was fatally shot during an armed robbery while attempting to protect a local news crew who were covering a story about a recent smash-and-grab style of theft.
We mourn the loss of retired police officer Kevin Nishita who honorably served our Bay Area Community. He was protecting/guarding a local news crew when he was senselessly murdered. Today, we escorted his body from the hospital with full law enforcement honors. 🙏 pic.twitter.com/ZbKRn7J732
— Alameda County Sheriff (@ACSOSheriffs) November 27, 2021
Mark Neerman, vice president of news and news director at KPIX, issued a statement following the murder of Nishita.
“It is with the deepest sadness that I let you know security guard Kevin Nishita has passed away. He died protecting one of our own, a colleague reporting on the very violence that took his life. I know you join me in sending condolences to his family and in sending thanks to Kevin for standing up for us all.”
Nishita, who served with the San Jose Police Department from 2001 to 2012, leaves behind a wife, two children, and three grandchildren. No arrests have been made in his murder, and authorities are offering a reward of $32,500 for information that leads to an arrest in the case.