Deputies responding to a silent robbery alarm at a Grand Terrace skating rink early Saturday found the building on fire, and the owner fatally shot inside, authorities and family members said.
Ryan Harsany, 43, of Brawley died in the shooting, the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department said in a written statement.
The silent alarm was first triggered about 1:50 a.m. at a business in the 22000 block of Commerce Way.
"Upon arrival, deputies saw smoke coming from the building and fire responded," according to the statement. "Deputies and fire personnel entered the building and found the victim unconscious and a fire inside. The victim was transported to a local area hospital where it was determined he had suffered gunshot wounds."
The victim succumbed to his wounds shortly before 7:30 a.m., officials said.
No suspect description was available.
It was not clear whether anything was stolen from the businesses, and no motive in the killing was released.
"No additional information is being released at this time," the sheriff's department statement said. "Updates will be issued as new information becomes available for release."
Friends and family members said Harsany owned the skating rink where he was killed, Cal Skate Grand Terrace. He also owned the nearby INFERNO restaurant.
All I can say is he was such a bright light in a dark world," said brother-in-law Michael Guymon. "Ryan was happy and loved helping others. He was always donating trying to help everyone."
"Ryan brought joy to everyone he touched and was always giving to the community," Guymon posted on his brother-in-law's Facebook profile. "Words don't and can't capture how hard this is on everyone in the family as well as the people Ryan employed. We are all in a state of disbelief."
A message posted on Cal Skate's website stated on Saturday that the business was "closed until further notice."
Anyone with information is asked to contact San Bernardino sheriff's detectives at 909-387-3589, or 909-387-8313. Tips may also be submitted anonymously to We-Tip at 800-782-7463.