A TV crew reporting on California’s wave of smash-and-grab store raids say they were shot and almost robbed while covering a theft

A still from local news footage taken after the crew's security guard was shot. It is a view of a street in Oakland, with the chyron 'KRON4 security guard shot while on assignment.'
A still from footage taken after the crew’s security guard was shot. KRON4
  • A TV crew in Oakland was targeted by robbers as they filmed, KRON4 reported.
  • The crew was covering a robbery amid a wave of mass smash-and-grab raids around the Bay Area.
  • Their security guard was shot in the lower abdomen and is recovering from surgery, KRON4 said.

A TV crew reporting on a smash-and-grab raid at a Bay Area store reported that they were targeted by robbers who shot their security guard and tried to steal their camera.

Around noon on Wednesday, the crew from KRON4 were covering a break-in that had taken place two days earlier at Prime 356, a clothing store in Oakland, the outlet said.

Shots were fired while the crew was filming, and their security guard, whom the outlet didn’t name, was shot in the lower abdomen and had to go to hospital, KRON4 reported. He emerged from surgery in a stable condition by 4 p.m. that day, it reported.

Two others were shot in the incident, the outlet reported. A reporter, who was also not named, continued filming as the scene unfolded but was “shaken” by the events, the outlet said.

“It really is just a heartbreaking day for us at KRON4,” said anchor Jonathan McCall as the network broke the news from the studio soon after

The targeting of news crews by robbers has been a problem in the Bay Area for years, and it is common practice for them to hire security guards when reporting on location, as The Guardian reported in 2013.

In this instance, the crew were responding to one store burglary out of many in a wave of mass smash-and-grab raids that have hit the Bay Area in the last two weeks. 

A still from Fox affiliate KTVU showing a security image of an Oakland store being burgled.
Burglars at Prime 356, Oakland, appeared to almost completely clear out the store in this security footage. Fox News/Prime 356

Surveillance footage from Prime 356’s burglary showed around 30 people stream into the shop and ransack it, grabbing almost its entire inventory of sneakers, hats and sweaters in less than 30 seconds. The store owner told NBC Bay Area that it was the second burglary in a month, at a combined cost to him of about $US180,000 ($AU250,580). 

Groups of up to 80 people have targeted numerous high-end stores en masse since last week, overwhelming security at stores like Louis Vuitton and Bloomingdale’s to rush in and plunder thousands of dollars of merchandise — often in a matter of minutes.