Las Vegas Sun

November 27, 2014

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7-Eleven clerk shoots beer thief in head, police say

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Mariano Tejeda-Zuniga

A convenience store clerk was arrested Sunday on a count of attempted murder in the shooting of a man he said tried to leave without paying for a case of beer, according to a Metro Police report.

The shooting happened about 3:45 a.m. in the parking lot of a 7-Eleven store at 2910 South Maryland Parkway.

The clerk, Mariano Tejeda-Zuniga, 55, said he saw the man take a case of Modelo beer out of the cooler and start to leave the store without paying, the report said.

When Tejeda-Zuniga called out to the man, the man laughed and ran out the door toward a waiting car in the parking lot, he reportedly told police.

The clerk said he planned to fire a shot into the air to scare the man, but as he pulled the gun’s slide back to load a bullet, the weapon fired, according to the report. Tejeda-Zuniga reported seeing the man fall and scramble into the car, but he did not think he had shot him, the report said.

Police were alerted to the shooting after a security guard at Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center reported that a man had been brought to the hospital with an apparent gunshot wound to the head.

Friends told police that the man, identified only as Kallum, had been shot at the convenience store, the report said. The bullet apparently entered under his right ear and came out the front of his face, the report said.

The shooting was captured on the store’s video surveillance system, which showed Tejeda-Zuniga carrying a semi-automatic pistol and firing at a man who was running away from him, the report said.

Tejeda-Zuniga said he did not call police and hid the gun under a stack of cups in the store because he was scared, according to the report.

He said the man did not appear to be armed and had never threatened him in the past, but he was scared because he didn’t know if someone in the car might come to the man’s aid, the report stated.

Tejeda-Zuniga said he had bought the gun about four days earlier from a man who approached him while he was dumping trash at a another convenience store where he works in North Las Vegas, according to the report. He paid $400 for the gun, which had been reported stolen in Las Vegas in 2008, the report said.

Tejeda-Zuniga was also arrested on a count of possession of a stolen firearm. He was booked into the Clark County Detention Center.

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