PLEASANTON, Calif. -- Police have identified the man who was shot and killed while trying to stop a theft in progress at a California Home Depot Tuesday afternoon.
The victim has been identified as 26-year-old Blake Mohs, who was a Home Depot loss prevention employee and Tri-Valley, California resident, police said Wednesday.
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"Unfortunately his life was cut short by this senseless act of violence that started with a theft and turned into a robbery and ended in his murder," Lt. Erik Silacci, a spokesman for the Pleasanton, California Police Department, said.
Police said it started when a 32-year-old woman was trying to leave the store through the back loading dock, with some type of electronic device that she allegedly had not paid for.
"She was confronted by one of the workers, and she seemed determined to exit the store without paying and then she was confronted by Blake, the loss prevention agent," Silacci said. "And that's when a physical confrontation ensued, and the female suspect pulled out a handgun and fired a shot at Blake."
Police said the shooter then got into a getaway car and left the scene. Day laborers in the store's parking lot told ABC San Francisco affiliate KGO they saw the gun thrown from the car before it was tracked to Oakland, California by the Alameda County Sheriff's Office.
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That's when they took the suspect into custody as well as a 31-year-old man, who was driving the getaway car.
In the backseat, police found the suspect's 2-year-old child, who was later reunited with family.
"We lost a valuable member of our community, a person who served to protect his fellow coworkers and customers and was a valuable partner with law enforcement," Silacci said.
Police said Mohs was a son, a brother, an Eagle Scout and a fiancé. He was set to get married in August at a Boy Scout campground in Sonoma County, according to the couple's wedding website.
"Blake was a real good person, I mean, he was like your go-to friend, like 'Hey Blake you want to go hang out? Yeah sure! Blake, you want to go grab a beer? Yeah,'" David, a family friend said.
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David, a family friend who went to school with Mohs and still lives next door to his parents had followed this shooting since it happened Tuesday but was shocked Wednesday morning to find out the victim was Blake.
"Every time I've seen him at work, he had a real enthusiastic mood about him at work, like he wasn't just there to do his job, he was actually enjoying his work," he said. "I came in and it was like he wasn't even working there, it was just like talking to a friend."
Home Depot released a statement Tuesday night saying, "We're heartbroken over this senseless tragedy. Blake was our associate and friend, and our hearts go out to his family and everyone who knew and loved him."
The suspects are facing a number of charges including murder, robbery, child endangerment, and conspiracy with the possibility of more charges on the way.
KGO reporter Lena Howland spoke with an armed security guard on-site who said he, along with a couple of other guards with past police or military experience were brought in on Wednesday as the store reopened for an added layer of security.