Pallet Firm Owner Killed in Armed Robbery Try
The owner of a pallet company here was shot to death in a robbery attempt at the business, police said Saturday.
Steven G. Feldman, 48, of Laguna Hills, was shot during the early morning heist at the Ross George Pallet Co. When police arrived, in response to a call from one of the employees, Feldman was taken to Western Medical Center-Santa Ana, where he died a short time later, authorities said.
Police said the shooting occurred about 7 a.m. Saturday when three men entered the building, at 940 E. Walnut St., through an open gate and held employees at gunpoint.
“Feldman was standing outside his office and saw the suspects pointing guns at his employees,” Sgt. Don Robertson said. “He started up the stairs to his office when he was shot with a rifle by one of the suspects.”
The three men fled south on Minnie Street in a black and gray passenger car and, by late Saturday, had not been apprehended, Robertson said.
A witness to the robbery attempt, contacted at the business later in the day, said he saw only two men, who entered the business through a back gate he had just opened. On Saturday, as usual, Feldman, his boss for the past 10 years, was already at work at 7 a.m., the employee said.
The men, one armed with a pistol, the other with a rifle, entered the gate, quickly rounded up four or five employees already at work and sprayed a stinging, pepper-like liquid in their eyes, apparently to disable them, the witness said. They also distracted two watchdogs in the company yard by giving them food, he said.
The witness said he ran to hide among the pallets, adding that one of the would-be robbers briefly chased him but gave up before finding him.
The gunmen then caught sight of the owner and one fired, hitting Feldman twice, the employee said. The gunmen fled, without robbing the business, and employees called police.
Feldman, whose company also has offices in Los Angeles, was “a nice man, a good man,” his employee said. He is survived by his wife and two children.