Security guard recovering at ICU after shooting at Las Vegas gift shop; suspect stole sweatshirt

The family of an on-duty security guard is speaking out after he was shot from an attempted shoplifting of a sweater.
Published: Jun. 16, 2022 at 11:11 PM PDT
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LAS VEGAS, Nev. (FOX5) - The family of an on-duty security guard is speaking out after he was shot from an attempted shoplifting of a sweater and police released details on suspect out of California.

Adolfo Rivera was critically injured when he was shot by a shoplifting suspect on Tuesday.

Rivera has worked as a security guard for the World’s Largest Gift Shop for at least six years. On Tuesday a woman, who police identified as Mercedes Cage, was seen by Rivera taking a sweater she didn’t pay for. When Rivera and another security guard, Juan Hernandez, confronted her in the parking lot, Cage pulled out her handgun and fired nine rounds.

A police report said Rivera was shot once in the upper back. A fellow security guard rendered first aid to his gunshot wound.

The police report went onto say when fellow security guard Hernandez saw Cage crossing Las Vegas Boulevard, she appeared to have a malfunction in her firearm. Police say he took the opportunity to run up and tackle her to the ground. As Hernandez and Cage struggled on the ground she accidently shot herself in the left armpit.

Rivera was rushed to trauma ICU at UMC. By Thursday he was in stable condition. His daughter Mary spoke with FOX5 outside the hospital.

She said he’s still on a ventilator. He had surgery early Thursday morning.

“Their main concern was the damage to his pancreas cause most of the damage was at the head of the pancreas and that’s a critical area with the ducts that connect to the stomach. But it’s looking ok so far, today they were just trying to control the bleeding,” Mary Rivera said.

Mary Rivera said for years her family has tried to convince him not to work there.

“We’ve been asking him for years to try to get a different job cause this is just so dangerous but everyone likes him because he does his job he’s really hard working he’s there six days a week, eight hours a day. And he’s good at his job because he’s not like scared of like confronting people,” Mary Rivera said.

She even recalled a time where he was beaten up in December and he had to get stitches.

Both Mary and her brother Anthony worked at World’s Largest Gift Shop for a short period of time. Mary said her dad gets paid $10 an hour at the most.

“I had to work there for two years and at one point I was making more than him and I wasn’t a security guard I was just a cashier/stocker,” Mary Rivera said.

“Got a job offer with better pay and I realized the kind of working environment there just wasn’t enough for so little pay,” Anthony Rivera said.

Mary River hopes her dad’s story will remind others to be kind when you see security.

“They might seem annoying sometimes they’re like questing you and asking you to do certain things like not park in the private parking lot so your car doesn’t get towed but they’re just trying to do the job that they’re there to do and they’re the first line of protection,” Mary Rivera said.

Doctors told Mary her dad will be in the ICU for the next three weeks. He is the main source of income for his household with two of Mary’s younger siblings. The family has started a GoFundMe to help pay for hospital bills.

“It’s just a crazy world the best thing right now is to just pray and be there for others if you’re not a religious person just think about others and be kind,” Mary Rivera said.

Meanwhile the suspect, Mercedes Cage from San Leandro, California is facing several charges including attempted murder and assault with a deadly weapon.