Shocking detail emerges from Oakland security guard shooting

The private security guard in Oakland who shot a man he believed was a burglar was armed when he should not have been.
February 14, 2014 10:00:15 PM PST
There has been a surprising development in Thursday's shooting in Oakland. ABC 7 News has learned that the private security guard, who shot a man he believed was a burglar, was armed when he should not have been. Some residents are asking that everyone to withhold judgment until the investigation is complete.

"We've lived in our house since 1978," said DeDe Muhler of Oakland.

Muhler has seen her Oakmore neighborhood change. Thursday's shooting is a reminder that crime has become a new reality and for her it's creeping closer to home.

"I never thought about any security systems in our neighborhood or whether they had a gun or not, it's never passed my mind," said DeDe.

But now she says she has to. Like many of her neighbors she has questions about private security guards in her neighborhood being armed. ABC7 News has learned that the contract between the residents in the security program and the company, Security Code 3, required an unarmed guard and it wasn't until after the shooting many learned their guard was carrying a gun.

"I'm kind of surprised to learn they were armed," said one neighbor.

"Many communities do make it very clear that they don't want their patrols to be armed," said Oakland Councilmember Libby Schaaf.

According to Schaaf, there has been an uptick in the hiring of private security, many of whom are operating under different community guidelines.

"It has to be carefully done, it has to be done with consideration," said Schaaf.

ABC7 News was there when that guard was questioned by police. Investigators say he shot a burglary suspect believed to have robbed a nearby home.

"I think he did the right thing by what he did," said Tamara Muhler from the Oakmore neighborhood.

The security guard was patrolling the Oakmore neighborhood when he spotted a burglary in progress on Harding Drive and chased the man before shooting him in the leg on Waterhouse Road.

Some there believe that's exactly what he should be doing, while patrolling and protecting their community from the bad guys.

"If other people are running around with guns, why shouldn't we be protected by somebody that has them as well?" said Tamara.

We called and then visited the offices of Security Code 3 for answers, but no one was there. Oakland police, for their part say that the shooting and questions on the guard's authorization to conceal or openly carry a weapon while on the job are still under investigation.

"I would like to see a reduction in crime, so how we get to that is a discussion we need to continue having," said a neighbor.