SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) – Kevin Nishita – the KRON4 security guard who was killed last year while protecting reporters – has been honored with the Radio Television Digital News Foundation’s citation of courage award.
Nishita was one of 10 people honored at the group’s 31st annual First Amendment Awards on March 9 at the Marriott Marquis in Washington, D.C.
Nishita’s wife, Virginia, accepted the award saying:
“On behalf of my family and I, we are honored to receive this award for Kevin. Kevin went above and beyond as a security guard for the Bay Area news crews. He developed true friendships with the teams of the newscasters of each network. For example, we went on vacation, he bought multiple umbrellas and I asked him, ‘why did you buy so many?’ And his response was, so that when they film outside, and it was raining, that he could protect the news crews from the elements and if they walked away with the umbrella, it’s ok because he had more in the car. And another time, Kevin drove two hours outside of his way to make sure that the news reporter would reach her home safely that night. His passion was to protect and to serve, and he once told me, this was his fun job. So we are absolutely honored here today to receive this award for him, for his ultimate courage. Thank you, thank you for honoring Kevin Nishita.”
Nishita died of his injuries on Nov. 27 after an attempted armed robbery while he was on assignment protecting a KRON4 crew.
He left behind a wife, two children and three grandchildren.
At the time of his death, he worked as an armed guard for Star Protection Agency.
Prior to working as a guard, he served as a police officer at the Oakland Housing Authority and the Hayward, San Jose and Colma police departments.
The KRON4 crew was covering a story Nov. 24 about a robbery where 12 thieves wearing masks and hoods raided a clothing store on the 300 block of 14th Street. At 12:20 p.m. an assailant attempted to steal KRON4’s camera equipment, according to police.
Two people were arrested the following month, though their names were not released because charges had not been presented.
“The case has not been presented to us, so we don’t have names,” the Alameda County DA PIO, Angela Ruggiero, told KRON4.