A man was taken to the hospital Friday after he was shot during a robbery in which two men stole his Rolex watch and three gold chains.
It happened around 4:20 p.m. at a luxury apartment building on the 2800 block of Sunset Place in the Westlake District, according to the Los Angeles Police Department.
Police and paramedics from the Los Angeles Fire Department responded to the area where they found a man suffering from a gunshot wound. The man was conscious and breathing and was taken to the hospital by ambulance.
The man has not been identified, but he’s believed to be between 25 and 30 years old.
He was taken to the hospital in critical condition, authorities said.
Police told KTLA that they are looking for two suspects, both described as Black men, who fled the scene on foot. The weapon used is believed to have been a blue semiautomatic handgun.
The man had a Rolex watch and three gold chains stolen from him during the robbery. A Rolls Royce was located in the area surrounded by crime scene tape, although it’s unclear if the vehicle was involved in the robbery.
The LAPD has reported an increase in violent crimes targeting affluent citizens across the city, particularly in the downtown area.
The growing problem of “follow-home” robberies in which criminals will follow their victims until they enter a secluded area and then rob them of their valuables by force, has led to police officials warning citizens to avoid flaunting expensive personal items.
Last November, the Police Department launched a task force to combat the rise in these crimes.
“The victims were being targeted based on the high-end jewelry they were wearing or the high-end car they were driving,” police said in a statement when they announced the task force’s creation.
In April, LAPD officials blamed the rise in these violent robberies on as many as 17 different organized gangs.
Chief Michel Moore has said that anyone carrying expensive items on their person or driving an high-end vehicle could be targeted.
The LAPD has released the following tips to protect yourself from follow-home robbers:
- Be careful while out with visible expensive jewelry.
- Traveling in groups and remaining in well-lit areas can help deter robbers.
- Always be aware of your surroundings and pay attention to those around you.
- After shopping, make it a habit to take a different route home and pay attention to vehicles and pedestrians behind you.
- If you think you are being followed, change your route and call the police.
- If approached by a robber, especially if the person has a firearm, the department encourages victims not to resist. “No property is worth the risk of loss of life,” LAPD says.