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Vigil to be held for Alpha Project security guard who was shot to death in front of East Village homeless shelter

Posted at 11:41 AM, Dec 30, 2019
and last updated 2019-12-31 02:34:38-05

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) -- A vigil is set to be held Monday night for a security guard who was shot to death outside of an East Village homeless shelter over the weekend.

People are expected to gather in front of the Alpha Project shelter on Imperial Avenue at 17th Street at 6 p.m. to remember security guard Ernest Lee Buchanan, 44.

At around 7:30 p.m. on Dec. 28, Buchanan was on his way back to the shelter after taking a meal break when someone approached him and opened fire before fleeing the scene.

RELATED: Alpha Project security guard shot, killed outside East Village shelter

Buchanan was taken to the hospital but died from his injuries a short time later.

San Diego police reviewed security camera footage to gather more information on the suspected shooter, but a description of the shooter was not immediately available.

Alpha Project staff members created T-shirts in memory of Buchanan, and with a large crowd expected to show support for Buchanan at the Monday vigil, Alpha Project President/CEO Bob McElroy said they hope to help Buchanan's family with expenses.

Meanwhile, with the suspected shooter on the loose, police set up a command post on 17th Street to help keep residents at ease.

McElroy said Alpha Project will look into the possibility of hiring armed security guards from now on.

In response to rumors that the shooting was gang related, McElroy told 10News, "There's got to be some redemption somewhere, at some point in time ... He certainly was a great guy, as far as working with us.”