Oakland, CA – The retired law enforcement officer who was shot last week while working as a security guard for a news crew has died of his wounds.
Multiple police agencies identified the retired officer as Kevin Nishita, who was shot in an attempted armed robbery on Nov. 24 while the rest of the crew was covering a story about another robbery, according to KRON.
Nishita succumbed to his wounds on Saturday, CNN reported.
The search for his killers remains ongoing.
The incident occurred in the 300-block of 14th Street outside Prime 356 clothing store shortly before 12:30 p.m. on Nov. 24, KRON reported.
A KRON news crew responded to the location after receiving word that at least 12 masked, hooded suspects carried out a smash-and-grab robbery at the store the night of Nov. 23.
“What are the odds that the mob will actually hit our shop, a small local business that takes care of everyone?” owner tells me. Video shows group of scofflaws breaking into & looting Prime 356 clothing store near 14th & Webster downtown. @oaklandpoliceca investigating pic.twitter.com/QO4zCJjfCc
— Henry K. Lee (@henrykleeKTVU) November 23, 2021
Nishita, a private security guard working for the Star Protection Agency California, responded with the crew, which is common practice, KRON reported.
While the crew was covering the store robbery, a gunman attempted to steal camera equipment Nishita was watching over, according to police.
The suspect ultimately opened fire on the security guard, hitting him in the lower abdomen, KRON reported.
Kevin Nishita honorably and bravely protected Bay Area TV reporters for years. I don’t pray very often but I prayed for him.
This morning we are heartbroken. 💔 The @ACSOSheriffs escorted his body from the hospital in Oakland with full law enforcement honors. pic.twitter.com/LfSEdWfzJj
— Amy Larson (@AmyLarson25) November 27, 2021
“Somebody rolled up, robbery gone bad, said ‘get down,’ he just started shooting at everybody,” a witness told KNTV. “He got shot for no reason, the dude didn’t even take the camera. Senseless attempt on multiple people’s lives.”
The reporter Nishita was working with was not injured in the attack.
A bystander was wounded by shrapnel and was later listed in stable condition at an area hospital, KRON reported.
The shooter fled the scene prior to officers’ arrival, according to KNTV.
Nishita was rushed to Highland Hospital, where he was taken into emergency surgery.
The retired officer succumbed to his wounds Nov. 27, CNN reported.
BREAKING: Retired police officer dies after he was shot while working security for TV news crew covering grab-and-run theft in Oakland.
— Breaking911 (@Breaking911) November 27, 2021
Nishita served with the San Jose Police Department (SJPD) from 2001 until 2012, when he joined the Colma Police Department (CPD).
He served as a detective and field training offer at the CPD, where he was promoted to the rank of sergeant in 2015, CNN reported.
Nishita retired from the CPD in 2018.
He leaves behind his wife, two children, and three grandchildren, KRON reported.
A fundraising page established to help his family in the wake of their loss has raised over $15,700 so far.
“We are devastated by the loss of security guard and our friend, Kevin Nishita,” KRON Vice President and General Manager Jim Rose said in a statement. “Our deepest sympathy goes to Kevin’s wife, his children, his family, and to all his friends and colleagues.”
“This senseless loss of life is due to yet another violent criminal act in the Bay Area,” Rose added. “We hope that offering a reward will help lead to the arrest of those responsible so they can face justice for this terrible tragedy.”
A $32,500 reward is being offered for information leading to the gunman’s arrest, CNN reported.
Oakland Police Department (OPD) homicide investigators released a photo of the suspect vehicle on Saturday.
OPD Homicide investigators have released a surveillance photo of a vehicle they believe was used in the attempted robbery and fatal shooting of a news crew guard. There is a reward for $27,500, call Homicide Section at 510 238-3821https://t.co/cpy6eVI3pk pic.twitter.com/WaSmftWO8M
— Oakland Police Dept. (@oaklandpoliceca) November 27, 2021
It is described as a white, four-door 2004-2008 Acura TL with a sunroof and no front license plate.
The OPD released a statement Nov. 24 notifying the public they would be putting more law enforcement officers on the streets in the wake of the sharp increase in violent crime that occurred the weekend prior.
“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,” the OPD 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.”