MODESTO (CBS13) — The Stanislaus County Sheriff’s Office said there was a fatal shooting outside a popular poker room in Modesto that’s not known for violence.
The shooting happened in the parking lot of the Empire Sportsmen’s Club, near McHenry and Kiernan Avenues. Deputies have identified the man as Alexander Wever of Ripon.
This started with a man who crashed his car, then reportedly jumped out of the car with a baseball bat. Deputies say he started a fight, prompting the on-scene security staff to fire that fatal shot.
Hearing of the violence outside in the parking lot is shocking to loyal gamer Martym Vanderlinin who visited the spot on his birthday, one day after the fatal shooting.
“I’ve never had any problems here or seen any problems here,” he said.
Deputies responded to the scene after a reported crash on site.
“The subject, Alexander Wever was treated at the scene and transported to a hospital where he was pronounced dead,” said Sgt. Josh Clayton with the Sheriff’s Office.
The sheriff’s offices said the guard who fired the fatal shot is part of a private security firm regulated by the state. Now this investigation will look into whether this shooting was justified.
“A lot of degrees of homicide are justifiable whether it’s self-defense or other circumstances,” said Clayton.
A security guard needs a permit and a license, which the sheriff’s office says this employee had. Deputies say this type of business is a place you’ll often see an armed guard standing watch.
“A bank and a casino would be high-value targets which would attract bad behavior,” said Clayton.
Some customers say they’re happy to see these guards with a gun.
“There’s a lot of money in there, you know, so somebody’s gotta watch it,” said Vanderlinin.
CBS13 received a statement from the general manager of the facility. He calls what happened in their parking lot, “a tragedy.” They say they’re working with law enforcement on this ongoing investigation
Detectives are now reviewing surveillance video and talking to witnesses. Anyone with further information relevant to the investigation is asked to call detectives at (209) 525-7083.