Black Friday Walmart Shooting: Police Release Surveillance Tape, Name New Suspect

Police say Detwone Watson, 29, of Oakland fired the shot that wounded Christopher Murillo, 21, of San Lorenzo.

San Leandro police named a second suspect Tuesday in the that attracted international attention because it happened on Black Friday.

Police say 29-year-old Detwone  D. Watson of Oakland was the gunman who shot 21-year-old Christopher Murillo of San Lorenzo in a robbery that turned out to be over $5 and a gold necklace.

Police had previously arrested 20-year-old Tony Phillips of Oakland, who was detained by the victim's relatives at the scene of the 1:50 a.m. shooting. Two other unnamed suspects remain at large.

Immediately after the shooting, Murillo was listed in critical condition, but authorities said he has been released from the hospital and is recovering at home.

At a Tuesday press conference, police also released a surveillance video of the Walmart parking lot where the robbery occurred.

A few details of the holdup can be glimpsed from afar on the grainy video.

And a chronology of events provided by lead investigator Sgt. Ted Henderson suggests this was just a random robbery by four men on the prowl.

According to Henderson, it was shortly before 1:50 a.m. on Black Friday when the victims, three cousins from San Lorenzo all in their early 20s, came out of the Walmart at 15555 Hesperian Blvd. where they had gone to buy a video game.

The game was out of stock, and the cousins walked back to their car at the far end of the parking lot empty handed, Henderson said.

While the Murillo cousins paused to have a cigarette, a group driving a two-door burgundy Buick Riviera of late ‘90s or early 2000 vintage pulled up.

Inside were four men, Henderson said: A driver who never got out of the car; a third man seated behind the driver who got out at one point; and the two named suspects, Phillips and Watson.

As Henderson described it, Watson, who was armed with a gun, got out of the front passenger seat. Phillips climbed out behind him and told the cousins to turn over their personal belongings.

Henderson said shooting victim Christopher Murillo handed Watson $5. Then Phillips tried to take a gold chain worn by his cousin.

“That was when the fight started,” Henderson said.

As that man fought with Phillips, the third cousin got involved. The third robbery suspect got out of the car to join the brawl.

Then, police said, Watson shot Murillo in the neck and jumped back into the car, which drove off, police said.

The third robber can be seen on the surveillance tape running away on foot. Phillips was detained by the Murillo cousins and arrested when police arrived at the scene.

Henderson said police do not know yet know the identities of the driver and the man who ran away.

They have issued an arrest warrant for Watson, charging him with attempted murder, two counts of attempted robbery and one count of robbery.

Henderson said Phillips was arraigned Tuesday on charges of attempted murder and attempted robbery.

Police think Watson remains in the area. They caution that he should be considered armed and dangerous.

“A call is all we need,” Henderson said.

The San Leandro Police Department anonymous tip line is 510-577-3278.

Tim November 30, 2011 at 12:29 AM
When seconds count, the police are minutes away.
Leah Hall November 30, 2011 at 12:55 AM
Just who approved Walmart in San Leandro, anyway? I have a distant memory of some citizen opposition as well as, in the words of William Shakespeare: a city representative who had been "scurrilous without being pleasant, impudent without being audacious, and pretentious without being witty." Well, not exactly Shakespeare... http://www.ibabuzz.com/hayword/2007/07/12/another-wal-mart/
Tom Abate (Editor) November 30, 2011 at 01:30 AM
I don't see how the police get a rap on this. I posted additional details. The perpetrators were four guys looking for trouble. As for Walmart, there was another shooting there in March but it was unlike this random event. Police called that a drug deal gone bad: http://sanleandro.patch.com/articles/san-leandro-man-shot-in-wal-mart-parking-lot
Tim November 30, 2011 at 01:40 AM
I'm not blaming the police for anything. It's a fact that when you're being attacked like these guys in the video, seconds count and the police are minutes away. That's what the Second Amendment is for.
Leah Hall November 30, 2011 at 02:11 AM
I just googled "crime parking lots walmart" and got 2,700,000 results... some random highlights: "Loughner bought ammunition used in the massacre at a local Walmart hours before the shooting." "What Walmart has taught one police chief..." "Generally I don’t do crime stories, but this one is just amazing: The Wal-Mart store on North Tryon Street hasn’t been open two weeks, and already there’s been 10 crimes reported there." "One of the most important issues raised by citizen groups and local communities in the growing public debate about Wal-Mart is whether or not a relationship exists between Wal-Mart stores and crime. In the last few years, anecdotal news accounts of crimes at Wal-Mart stores or parking lots, coupled with statements made by law enforcement, have raised a public concern that Wal-Mart stores may be, as one court has described it, a "magnet for crime"" "if you’re a huge employer, you’re going to get a huge segment of employee shootings — but will Walmart start loaning out Kevlar vests?" "What she found startled her: A substantial amount of crime was occurring in Wal-Mart parking lots, and yet the company's security effort was almost entirely focused on protecting the merchandise inside the stores." "Sex at a Wal Mart parking lot" "traveling meth lab exploded in Wal Mart parking lot"
Barry Kane November 30, 2011 at 03:48 AM
How did we ever get two of these "gems" in our city?
Fran November 30, 2011 at 05:00 AM
I remember Tony Santos, when running for mayor, was adamant he wouldn't let Wal-Mart locate there. Not that I blame him, I just get a kick out of the blatant pandering:) The reality is if Wal-mart didn't go there, it would probably still be empty.
Leah Hall November 30, 2011 at 06:48 AM
Well, I googled Target and Sears parking lot crime too. Apparently all big box stores are "crime magnets." The problem seems to have more to do with being a big box store with a big parking lot and less to do with being a "Wal-Mart" per se. That said, new stepped up security patrols in the parking lot seem like they would help. As the book of the same name says, "the high cost of low price..."
Leah Hall November 30, 2011 at 07:19 AM
Here's a TED talk on retrofitting big box stores and their associated parking lots. Some of the projects are "suburban landscapes made to grow up," while others get made green and restore the local ecology. (about 20 minutes in length) Ellen Dunham-Jones: Retrofitting suburbia http://www.ted.com/talks/ellen_dunham_jones_retrofitting_suburbia.html
Leah Hall November 30, 2011 at 07:27 AM
A perfect spot for Faith Fellowship Mega Church!
Surlene Grant November 30, 2011 at 09:12 AM
Barry, Leah -- quick primer ... just so you know. (Unfortunately, I can't remember the exact years and dates, but within the last 10 years this is what happened and it happened over a period of about three years). Prior to Walmart being at that site, the site was a very popular Target Store. Target's lease was winding down. Target determined, by whatever reasons they use, that they wanted to move to the Bay Fair Mall location. They grabbed the spot at Bay Fair. You may recall, San Leandro had two Targets for a while -- right down the street from each other. So it was known in the retail market world that the Target space was available. It seemed that Walmart was expanding to many neighboring cities. It was all very controversial. Some on the City Council didn't want Walmart to come to that location....as pointed out..we already had a Walmart in town. (One that came before my time, but it also was very controversial). The Hesparian Target site was available and is permitted for such retail business. So as long as Walmart did not change the footprint -- say add additional square footage -- but just cleaned up the site and moved in, then there was nothing the City could do to stop them. (And yes, there were some citizens who didn't want WM, but there were many who did!). WM was not changing any characteristics of the location or the codes or anything. They just moved in. No challenge to the permit. So that is the quick reason of "how" and "why" and "who."
David November 30, 2011 at 01:53 PM
That really shouldn't be a surprise. First, there are a lot of them, second, they are easily accessible (drive in, drive out, or run somewhere), third, people going there are going to shop, so they have money or credit cards and they have cars to steal.
Leah Hall November 30, 2011 at 03:33 PM
Thanks for letting us know, Surlene. I've heard that they are pretty hard to stop. I can't help but wonder, though, how our wealthier neighbors to the north, especially Alameda (with many of the same big box stores as ours) have kept them at bay.
Mike November 30, 2011 at 05:42 PM
Alameda does not have big box stores Leah, there is no Costco, No Target. And the key to how Walmart entered San Leandro is they moved into an existing retail zoned building, the old Costco and the old Target. There are none of those types of buildings in Alameda. Do you think before you post?
Tom Abate (Editor) November 30, 2011 at 05:45 PM
Let me just jump in for a moment with a reminder about civility. We can differ. That's what these forums are about. Please try not to attack or accuse. Mike had a great post earlier about the difference between Alameda and San Leandro but was it necessary to add the last sentence?
Tiare Pena November 30, 2011 at 06:19 PM
The saddest part of the this is how many people left this young man writhing on the ground and just drove away or even in one case backed their car up and left.
Leah Hall November 30, 2011 at 07:51 PM
Hi Mike, Thinking is always good, thanks for the public service announcement (have you just hit upon a great new feature for Patch?). The Town Centre mall has shares lots of big box locations with San Leandro. Off the top of my head there is Kohls, Bed Bath and Beyond, Ross Dress For Less, Staples, Annes Linens. Like San Leandro's big box stores, these Alameda stores all have big parking lots too. The notable exception was Borders Book Store, but that is history. It was opened and closed in what seemed not more than a year or two. Here's a partial online list of big box stores. Check it out when you can't sleep.,, http://shoppinghevanet.com/index-stores.html
Leah Hall November 30, 2011 at 08:00 PM
That's o.k., Tom. Some of my neighbors on Patch remind me of my 2 terriers at home. Whoa be to my poor male terrier if my female terrier ever catches him on higher ground....it turns out that some of the Earths's creatures just have to be "right" all the time. I think its rather stupid, but hey, what 'cha gonna do? Thanks for your help!
Fran November 30, 2011 at 08:05 PM
Fran November 30, 2011 at 08:12 PM
That didn't stop the city from disallowing Grocery Outlet at the Albertson's site. the city could have just changed the zoning, y'know, rezoned it as mixed-use and demanded Wal-Mart put in an underground parking, etc., etc. LMAO. I guess it's easier to bully the little people, but the city somehow finds the restraint not to go after a behemoth like Wal-Mart. There's a word for that, but I can't say it on The Patch ;)
Leah Hall November 30, 2011 at 08:16 PM
You raise a very good point that has been nagging me since I read Surlene's comment. We have the Village Market place proposed for downtown. Instead of trying to support locally owned businesses that would help foster a distinct sense of place, the developer and city are courting national and international chains (Fresh & Easy, owned by a British corporation). Reading the financial news, Fresh & Easy is still is in a expansion/investment phase and has yet to show a profit. Some analyst are predicting that the whole U.S. initiative will go belly-up. Be that as it may, it sounds like once the city has brought in a big box store, it has a ratcheting effect and they are almost impossible to retrofit to another use or purpose in our city under current zoning and property laws. That makes me sad.
Leah Hall November 30, 2011 at 11:17 PM
David, great point. The fact that there is a lot of them (net income 15.355 billion, 2.1 million employees, 8,970 locations) /and/ they are poorly designed, from a city planning point of view, supports a case to be made about suburban retrofitting (as described by Ellen Dunham-Jones in her book: Retrofitting Suburbia). Imagine the impact! In the organic food world, a small sub-group advocates growing organic food and products at a scale that accommodates Walmart and other big retailers. Walmart buys organic food because of market demand for it. Increasingly consumers are demanding healthier food. While I don't look at organic food and city planning as analogous, tragic events like we saw last Friday are really bad for business. Walmart might be wise to embrace best practices city planning principals. My point is this: Walmart should strive to minimize its negative and exploitative practices and maximize social responsibility. There are certain things that Walmart will never do as well as smaller, locally owned and locally sourced stores. However, merely doing what Walmart can do in order to steadily improve, even incrementally, should have big impacts. City leaders and community advocates might be wise to put the hard court press on our 2 Walmarts to go in this direction or get out of town.
Tom Abate (Editor) December 01, 2011 at 12:16 AM
I noticed that, too. There were some people who congregated. But so many just went about their business.
Leah Hall December 01, 2011 at 12:30 AM
Not kidding. :) Found this article on Walmart's status from a business perspective. "Why Wal-Mart may never be great again" -Daily Finance What's doing in the discounter? "Wal-Mart is losing shoppers. It's falling behind in the digital revolution. There are too many people out there relishing its failures, and it will become a self-fulfilling prophecy if Wal-Mart doesn't wake up and reposition itself properly...." "...a lot of people want to see Wal-Mart fail...." Tellingly, the writer goes on to say that not only do people not want to be seen inside a Walmart store (guilty) "apparently a lot of people don't want to be seen at walmart.com, either." **That is low!** :) See full article from DailyFinance: http://srph.it/r2NF3d
Fran December 01, 2011 at 01:34 AM
I wasn't aware it was ever considered great to begin with. Maybe when Sam Walton opened his first few stores. Sooner or later the ugliness of capitalism rears its ugly head. Policies are put in place that run contrary to the things that made them great to begin with. Sort of like politicians. It's the same old story over and over again. Granted, we have a lot of uneducated consumers in America, but even that can take them only so far. I, for one, will be relishing the day their time is up. Now they want to open stores in India and people and politicians are threatening they will burn them down. Yet, we are opening our arms for Fresh & Easy?
Leah Hall December 01, 2011 at 02:10 AM
Apparently, San Leandro needs to wake up and reposition itself properly too. I have no idea why we are opening our arms to a one story big box + big parking lot project on a city owned downtown site with several modes of public transportation. Does not compute, not financially or best practices-wise.


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