San Jose police officers are on a man-hunt for two perpetrators who were responsible for shooting security personnel over a $30-box of sweetened cigarillos at the East San Jose Liquor Store.
It takes but one heroic act to make a difference. Thirty-four-year-old Manuel Alvarez Zuniga was actually working at the Bboss nightclub next to the Liquors 4 Less Store but still he responded when a man stole cigarillos and ran to a getaway car.
Zuniga and another guard were alarmed with the commotion and immediately saw the thief running with the stolen box of cigarillos and headed to the getaway car. Shots were fired coming from someone in the car.
What happened next was utterly unexpected; Zuniga blocked the bullets with his own body in order to save a fellow security guard.
“The first bullet went past my head,” said the guard who refused to have his name published “And then after that, I noticed Manny jumped in front of the line of fire. He then took all the bullets that were aimed directly at me, and saved my life.”
“I just hope these guys that did this turn themselves in, because they didn’t deserve to take a life away just for some stupid little cigarettes.” He said while close to tears.
Zuniga was rushed to the local hospital but was pronounced dead.
An employee from the liquor store told authorities that two suspects went in and bought a Hennessy’s cognac from the store. One of the suspects came back to the liquor store to steal the box of cigarillos.
Liquors 4 Less Store Manager Sonny Gia was all praise for the heroic acts of Zuniga who although worked for Bboss nightclub took the time to keep watch of Liquors 4 Less store. A memorial filled with candles, flowers, and Zuniga’s favorite mint candies are mounting outside Liquors 4 Less store.
San Jose police Sgt. Heather Randol said that there are no leads at this time regarding the identification of suspects. A cash reward is also offered for those who can send in tips that can help out with the case. People may contact Crime Stopper Tip Line at (408)947-7867.
A fundraising campaign was started by Zuniga’s friends which aims to pay for the slain guard’s funeral expenses. This has accumulated funds of up to $920 by Monday afternoon.
We all have a lot to learn from Manuel Alvarez Zuniga who did not just perform his duty as a security officer but also responded outside his scope as he did not really work the liquor store. To him, being a security officer is not just a job – it’s a social responsibility. He did something extraordinary of a human being and is an inspiration to fellow security guards all over the world.
For more information, check out this news article.