Homicide brings security guard dangers into focus

By Ryan Nobles - bio | email
Posted by Terry Alexander - email

CHESTERFIELD, VA (WWBT) - This unexpected homicide has put new focus on the dangers facing security guards on the job.

American Security Company President John Hall said that he and his employees are shocked and saddened by this horrific event. He said that it appears that Damion West was just senselessly attacked.

For Miguel Osorio, a nighttime ritual at the Ivy Walk Apartments won't happen anymore.

"When I come home late at night, he watched me, it was good and he'd say 'everything good buddy?' and I'd say yeah."

West was one of 200 different security guards stationed throughout Central Virginia by American Security Group. While their presence at places like shopping malls and state agencies often goes unnoticed, this incident shows that presence serves a purpose.

"I see this place as very, very safe, until today," said Osorio.

West's death has reminded his fellow employees at American Security Group, where he worked for less than a year, just how dangerous the job can be.

"Officer West was well respected by his peers. We are all devastated by this tragic event," said company President John Hall.

Hall said that West was an unarmed security officer and in order to be eligible to hold the position he passed a 24 hour training course, sanctioned by the Department of Criminal Justice Services.

His presence always made Miguel Osorio feel just a bit more comfortable. A feeling he doesn't have any more

The fact that the victim in this case was protecting an apartment complex is actually pretty rare. A recent report released by the Department of Criminal Justice Services found that only 4.6% of private security guards were paid to guard residential complexes.

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