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Security guard is shot dead

April 20, 2008|Ruben Vives | Times Staff Writer

A security guard and father of seven who exchanged gunfire with two men outside an Arlington Heights auto parts store was killed when he went to the aid of a bystander wounded in the gun battle, his family and police said.

Hernan Cardona, 60, of South Gate was standing outside the Auto Zone store he patrolled when he and two men wearing dark hooded sweat shirts fired on each other late Friday night.

Cardona's son, who watched a security camera video of the shooting, said Saturday that his father was shot several times as he bent over to help a man who had been hit. Police have not identified the bystander. Cardona died at the scene, said LAPD Officer April Harding.

The motive for the shooting in the 1900 block of South Western Avenue remains unclear, she said.

Wilfredo Cardona, 34, said the video showed two gunmen shooting his father from behind about three times. The security guard also was struck in the head at least once, his son said. "My dad and my best friend is gone now," said the son, weeping. "I feel lonely."

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ruben.vives@latimes.com

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