Suspect Killed at Apple Store ID'd

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Trained security guards learn when to shoot. (Published Monday, Apr 4, 2011)

    The suspect killed in a gun battle at an Apple store at the Otay Ranch Towne Center in Chula Vista Monday has been identified, according to police

    Alex Somphonh Choulamontry, 23, was a documented gang member and on active California State parole, said Chula Vista Police Dept. spokesperson Bernard Gonzales.

    “Choulamontry had convictions for theft, possession of controlled substances, driving under the influence and false identification to a peace officer,” said Gonzales.

    Johnny Chenda, 25, and Melissa Ortiz, 21, were arrested in connection with the attempted burglary at the Apple Store just before 7 a.m.

    An armed security guard, hired by Apple to protect one of its San Diego stores, confronted Chenda and Choulamontry, police said.

    The guard, 58-year-old Jose Jimenez, is a retired law enforcement officer who works for Security Industry Specialists based in Culver City.

    Jimenez told police the shooting began when one of the suspects pointed a gun at him.

    Investigators said the three suspects got into a silver Acura and crashed into a light pole and a post before stopping on a curb.

    Choulamontry was shot and killed inside the car, police said. Chenda and Ortiz were found on a patio in a community of townhomes just east of the shopping center.

    The suspects were positively identified by Apple store employees, according to Chula Vista police.

    The Apple store security guard was not injured, police said.

    Investigators said one of the suspects' two handguns was stolen. They're looking into whether the trio may have been involved in prior smash and grabs.

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