Arrest in homicide of San Francisco security guard

- An arrest has been made following the homicide of 61-year-old security guard Rolando De Leon Romero.

Romero was just a half-hour into his shift when he was shot and killed just before 5:30 a.m. Monday. He was on duty - and unarmed - while patrolling the Alice Griffith public housing complex in San Francisco's Bayview neighborhood.

"Officers received a call about two shots being fired and a person down," said Officer Joseph Tomlinson, a San Francisco police spokesman.

Police found Romero shot near a bench alongside a building under construction  at a newer section of the complex.

According to San Francisco Police, 24-year-old Cardell Mason Coleman was arrested around 12:48 a.m. Tuesday in connection with Romero's death. Coleman was taken into custody in the 2700 block of Arelious Walker Drive and was booked into San Francisco County Jail for homicide. 

Residents of the complex Romero was patrolling say they're shocked and saddened that someone they relied on to keep them safe lost his life.

"It's terrible," said Marie Visto. "I mean, this just doesn't make any sense, that someone would just kill a security guard."

Shawn Carter agreed, saying, "You don't expect a security guard to get shot, at all."

Romero worked for Stars and Stripes Protective Services in Hayward. He usually lived in Hayward but after his shift, stayed at a trailer marked "security" near the complex.

He leaves behind a wife and children in the Philippines. His sister is traveling to the Bay Area from out of state to help make funeral arrangements.

Residents say Romero was a familiar face in a neighborhood where security guards are a must.

"This is the inner city," Carter said. "A lot of bad characters come around here. No doubt about that. So security is of the utmost importance around here, definitely."

Visto said, "There's a lot of fights that break out, and things that happen. Yeah, it's needed out here."

She said the guards at the complex "make rounds. If there's people making noise or causing a ruckus, they confront it, or they'll call the police and ask them to come out and do patrols."

Details on a motive as well as Coleman's booking photo have not been released. 

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