At least two robbers ambushed an armored vehicle in broad daylight Thursday and opened fire on the armed guards, seriously injuring one in the parking lot of a Southern California casino before fleeing with cash, police said.
At least two suspects, armed with handguns and a rifle, remained at large hours after the shooting in Gardena, a town about 15 miles (24 kilometers) south of downtown Los Angeles.
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According to Lt. Gardena Police’s Chris Cuff is expected to survive the guard. The other warden was not shot, but was taken to the hospital for cuts he sustained during the Hustler Casino violence. The armored vehicle is operated by Loomis US, a cash handling company; a representative did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Thursday’s robbery came just weeks after thieves broke into an unattended Brink tractor trailer parked at a remote truck stop and stole millions of dollars worth of jewelry and gems, according to the vehicle’s two armed guards had gone away. This theft occurred early July 11 in the unincorporated community of Lebec, about 75 miles (about 121 kilometers) north of downtown Los Angeles.
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Both offenses are considered rare. Cuff said detectives in Thursday’s case were working with other law enforcement agencies to determine if there were any links between the two incidents.
On Thursday, the suspects waited for the armored vehicle and immediately began shooting just after 10 a.m., Cuff said. The vehicle had arrived at the casino to drop off cash.
“As soon as they got out of the car, they were hit with gunfire,” he said.
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The guards returned fire, but it was not immediately clear if any of the suspects were hit. Police recovered a getaway vehicle but are unsure if others were used to escape.
Investigators are checking whether the unknown amount of cash was stolen from the armored vehicle or by the guards themselves. No one in the casino was robbed, Cuff said.
Alvin Spencer, a patron of the casino, told KTLA that the scene was chaotic as players and staff were evacuated.
“A truck got ready to come in and next thing they started drawing guns,” Spencer said.
© 2022 The Canadian Press
https://globalnews.ca/news/9038629/robbers-california-casino/ Robbers ambush an armored vehicle and shoot dead two guards in a California casino parking lot – National