Youth Organization Robbed at Gunpoint

Second Chance Youth just returned from fundraising trip

By Lauren Steussy and Kelly McPherson
|  Monday, Apr 2, 2012  |  Updated 7:33 AM PDT
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Michael Celestine with the Escondido Pop Warner talks about how the youth sports organization has suffered from alleged embezzlement.

Michael Celestine with the Escondido Pop Warner talks about how the youth sports organization has suffered from alleged embezzlement.

A van filled with Second Chance Youth workers and their fundraising money was robbed early Monday morning in the 4700 Block of Home Avenue in the Hollywood Park area of San Diego.

One victim tells NBC7 San Diego that the group had just returned from selling candy and merchandise in Chico to raise funds for the non-profit organization that helps young people overcome drugs and violence.

San Diego Police say they are now looking for a group of 4 or 5 men. At the time of the robbery, some suspects wore masks and at least one man carried a loaded rifle, according to Lt. David Rohowits.

One round was fired into the air during the attack. No one was hurt.

Doug McLendon says he was on top of the large passenger van unloading the group's bags when he noticed the masked men running toward them. He recalls seeing more than one gun.

McLendon says he ran far enough away to avoid the violence. He watched from across the street as the rest of the group got down on the ground and handed over their own cash and the group's fundraising money.

The robbers got away with an unknown amount of cash and ran westbound on Home Avenue toward a Valero gas station.

Investigators are interviewing the 10 victims to put together a more complete suspect description. No one has been arrested.

 

The victims were with a non-profit organization called Second Chance Youth, which aids with job placement.

Police are still looking for the suspects in the area.

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