A liquor store clerk described by patrons as a friendly and generous man was shot and killed during a robbery Sunday night at the Brookhouse Liquor Store at 800 N. Anaheim Blvd., Anaheim police said.
Officers responding to an 11:47 p.m. robbery call at the store arrived to find that Charles Barbu, 47, of Garden Grove had been shot several times in the upper torso, according to Anaheim Police Sgt. John Haradon.
Barbu was treated at the scene by paramedics and taken by ambulance to UCI Medical Center, where he died at 1:18 a.m, Haradon said. A witness told officers that two male Latinos in their early 20s, both about 5 feet, 9 inches tall, had robbed the store and shot Barbu.
Barbu, who was married and had three children, was described by one longtime customer as “the friendliest man in Anaheim.”
Terry Ursua, an Anaheim resident for 36 years, said “Chuck” had been the night clerk at the store at the corner of Anaheim Boulevard and North Street for as long as she could remember. She described him as “gruff, in a friendly, funny way.”
“Chuck was real mellow and down to earth and he treated everyone who came in here real well,” she said. “If you didn’t have enough change, he’d say, ‘Ah, forget it,’ and put it in out of his own pocket.”
Ursua said she had been in the store about 10:30 Sunday night, joking with Barbu about what they believed was the unusually high number of police officers in the area at the time. Barbu always listened to a police radio he kept behind the counter, she said.
Haradon said Monday afternoon that investigators had no leads on the robbers and no motive for the shooting.