A liquor store owner in Oakland, Chinatown has been taken into custody after he used his handgun to stop a robbery in progress, reports CBS San Francisco News. On Monday around 5:30 pm, the liquor store owner saw a woman being robbed of her camera outside his store on Ninth and Franklin. He ran out with his handgun and ordered the assailant to stop. He then reportedly fired four shots causing the suspect to run to his vehicle and flee. When the police arrived, they ended up arresting the liquor store owner. No one was injured due to gunfire.
Oakland Chief of Police LeRonne Armstrong addressed the incident on Facebook. He said he didn’t want to see business owners arm themselves and instead be good witnesses.
“Our message really is that we don’t want to see our business owners or others begin to arm themselves,” Armstrong said. “We would really prefer them to be good witnesses and give us the observations that they have; share that information, call law enforcement immediately and let OPD respond and follow up. What we really don’t want to do is bring any additional issues that threaten safety into the equation.”
Armstong said the fired bullets could unintentionally hurt someone.
“Particularly, we don’t want people to fire weapons into our community,” he continued. “When weapons are fired in our community, there could be unintended victims; people who are hit by gunfire. And we want to avoid that as much as we can.”
Chinatown residents and business owners have been on edge after the recent string of attacks and burglaries in the area. Carl Chan, the head of the Chinatown Chamber of Commerce told CBS News, that many in the community supported the store owner because he was trying to help someone else.
“When I talk to the entire community they feel sad that someone is trying to help others and ends up to the be the one arrested or being in custody,” Chan said. “So I think many of the people feel strongly that we should be supporting the store owner.”
Police said the investigation is ongoing and that the business owner did not spend the night in jail. According to KTVU, the 36-year-old store owner faces one count of felony assault with a firearm. He was bailed out with $60,000 on Tuesday.