Would-Be Oakland Taco Truck Robber Confronted By Armed Owner; 2 Shot

OAKLAND (CBS SF) – A taco truck owner accosted by an armed robber in Oakland early Thursday defended himself with his own gun in a shootout which injured both the victim and gunman, according to police.

The incident was reported at 1:34 a.m. in the 2000 block of Fruitvale Avenue, police said.

Oakland Police Officer Johnna Watson said the truck’s owner was outside sweeping and doing other maintenance work when an armed man approached him and demanded money.

The truck owner was carrying a gun as well, and the two exchanged fire.

Both were shot, and were taken to hospitals, where they were in stable condition Thursday.

The suspected robber was placed under arrest but remained in the hospital under guard, Watson said.

KCBS’ Bob Melrose Reports:

Police also detained two other people believed to be connected to the robbery, an adult man and a juvenile.

Officers canvassed the neighborhood Thursday morning looking for witnesses and are trying to obtain surveillance video footage from nearby businesses.

Ron, a nearby resident, said he couldn’t believe it.

“This shouldn’t happen. They shouldn’t be robbing anybody, but I guess that’s a sign of the times,” he said.

The incident was the latest in a string of robberies of taco trucks, Watson said. She said the trucks are inviting targets for robbers because they stay open late and deal in cash.

Oakland police have increased patrols in areas with late-night taco trucks, Watson said.

Last year on December 30th a five-year-old was shot and killed at a nearby taco truck at 54th and International Boulevard.  No one has been arrested in that case.

(Copyright 2012 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

  • gregm

    It’s NOT a sign of the times, it’s just plain old crime that’s here all the time. The area doesn’t help either…

  • nick

    nice job by the taco truck owner protecting himself and helping the cops catching this idiot. now let’s hope the DA doesn’t waste public funds trying to build a case against an obvious case of self defense.

  • John Maniz

    What is up with the taco trucks and shootings in Oakland? Is it Oakland? There’s been three shootings in the past 10 months that I know of????? Including the point blank shooting of a 5 year old little boy!!!!!

  • Dan

    This is the reason why it is so important to have the second ammendment. If this guy didn’t have a gun then the suspect might of killed him and taken the money that he worked hard for. Some people say just give them what they want, it’s not worth it, but if someone takes all your money how are you supposed to feed your family, because you can’t count on anyone for help. And if the guy was killed how is his family to survive. No matter what anyone says money is everything, just try to live without it and you will see my point.

  • Gifted One

    Finally someone is defending themselves against this riffraff. Good job!!

  • OaklandTaxpayer

    My heart goes out to the taco truck owner. Trying to make an honest living. The thug(s) are another matter (of garbage). Unfortunately our police are overwhelmed (no thanks to occupyists in downtown). The mayor and this council making appearances is not going to sweep this city of what ills it. This could have ended much more ugly. WE don’t pay taxes to invite occupyists, but we do to protect our citizens/small business owners. Words of thought for our mayor and council.

    • Jolio

      if they leave the protesters alone, no violence would occur…more overtime money and safer to chase innocent protester without weapons than chasing robbers.

  • http://sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com/2012/02/03/oakland-food-truck-vendors-say-theyre-being-terrorized/ Oakland Food Truck Vendors Say They’re Being ‘Terrorized’ « CBS San Francisco

    […] Early Thursday morning, the owner of El Mazatlan taco truck exchanged gunfire with two potential robbers. No one was killed, but the suspects were later arrested. […]

  • Victor Connolly

    This incident further underscores the need for a statewide “shall issue” ( as opposed to the current “may issue” ) concealed carry law. That way, honest, law-abiding citizens such as this taco truck owner won’t have to resort to carrying a concealed weapon illegally in order to defend themselves in situations like these.

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