Chicago IL. Nov,24 2007
The start of the busy holiday shopping season turned violent at a tiny, tidy clothing store on Chicago’s Southwest Side on Friday afternoon when a security guard was shot and killed.
Just before 1 p.m., a trio of thieves walked in to Get M Girlz at 2547 W. 63rd, announced a robbery, and started to unload racks of clothing.
One of the robbers began struggling with the store’s security guard, and in a matter of seconds, the guard had been shot several times in the chest, according to Chicago Police.
As the thieves bolted from the business, Harold D. Long Jr., 22, of the 800 block of North Sacramento, lay dying.
He was taken to Advocate Christ Medical Center in Oak Lawn where he was pronounced dead, authorities said.
Long’s family said he had worked at the store for about 1½ years and was going to school in hopes of one day opening his own business.
“He was very dedicated to his job,” said his sister, Shauntamika Friley, 25, adding that her brother had planned to start his own security service.
Friley said her brother, who she thought was supposed to be off Friday, was a generous and loving uncle. “He was the type of person when he loved you, he really loved you,” Friley said.
A second person in the store, a female sales clerk, was uninjured in the holdup.
“There are witnesses,” said Chicago Lawn District police Cmdr. Leo Schmitz. Police said they’ve received some helpful leads.
One shopkeeper in the area said the clothing store had been targeted by robbers before. Police said store owners need to be especially careful during this season.
“This is the time of year where if you’re selling a lot, these bad guys know you’ve got a lot,” Schmitz said.
Harvey Hobson, who owns the What’s Poppin’ popcorn and candy store across the street, said he’s concerned about his own shop. He said he thinks the clothing store had been robbed at least two other times and that thieves tried to hold up a nearby dry cleaners in recent weeks but left after learning cash receipts had been deposited.
The slain security guard “was a nice young man,” Hobson said. “I hated to hear that happened to him — he was just a real good guy.”
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