A 46-year-old liquor store clerk in San Bernardino was fatally shot on Tuesday, leaving regular customers and friends reeling from the loss.
Nader Alkouli, who immigrated to the U.S. from Syria, worked at P&J Liquor in San Bernardino for years, but at about 8 p.m., he was found suffering from a gunshot wound on the sidewalk outside the store.
He succumbed to his wounds at a local hospital, and the store now has one fewer friendly face to greet customers.
“He was a really respectful person to everybody, no matter color, shape, size, male, female, everybody,” said Steve Mead, a longtime customer and friend. “Always positive, always funny, sharing food from Syria, teaching me Arabic.”
Another regular, Ronda Downton, said Alkouli looked out for her, noting when she came by the store later in the day than her normal visits.
“I came here because they told me those were his blood spots on the concrete, and I came here because I didn’t believe it,” said Downton.
It’s unclear what exactly happened Tuesday night in the store. Police are investigating, but could only say there was a confrontation between Alkouli and the suspected gunman, 21-year-old William Norris Jr., who was arrested on Wednesday and booked on murder charges.