Hayward Police Searching for Man Who Shot Home Depot Employee

Hayward police are looking for an armed man who shot a loss prevention security officer and pistol whipped another at a Home Depot Sunday afternoon.

The Home Depot is on Hesperian Boulevard, not far from the Southland Mall. The shooting happened outside the Home Garden Center.

The suspect was described by police as a light-skinned Hispanic male in his 30s, 6-feet tall, with short grayish hair worn in a small ponytail. He was wearing long denim shorts, an orange t-shirt, gray sweatshirt and white socks pulled up to his knees.

Police said two loss-prevention security officers who were on duty spotted a man trying to walk out of the store with a cart full of tools without paying. When the loss prevention officers approached the man outside the Garden Center, a struggled ensued and the suspect pulled out a gun and shot one loss prevention officer and used the revolver to strike the other on the left side of his head, according to police.

The home improvement store said the man who was shot is still in the hospital. Both security officers are expected to recover, according to Hayward police.

At the time of the shooting, the store was open and full of shoppers. The store closed immediately following the shooting, but opened shortly thereafter.

Shoppers said it was a bit chaotic at the time of the shooting.

"We pulled in just as the first officer arrived, and there was some hysterical people in the gardening department, and I think the gentleman ran away," shopper Reno Caldwell said. "And when we went into the store, we were told that the security officer had an incident, and apparently, he was shot."

A spokesperson for Home Depot said the store did not think its customers were at risk, so it remained open Sunday as the investigation continued.

The suspect is still on the loose, and he was last seen running across Hesperian Boulevard.

Police canvassed the area for security footage at local businesses.

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