Man dies trying to stop thief from stealing laptop at Starbucks in Oakland, police say

OAKLAND, Calif. -- A man died Tuesday afternoon after he chased down a suspect or suspects who stole his laptop at a Starbucks in Oakland.

The New Year's Eve tragedy marked the city's 75th murder this year.

Witnesses describe the man as young, in his 20s or 30s. He died of severe head injuries after being taken to a hospital.

Witnesses say he was working on his laptop at the Starbucks near a window when his computer was snatched. He chased the suspects outside to their getaway car.

"When the suspect approached and took the laptop the victim chased the suspects right around the corner here to Antioch," said Oakland police officer John Watson.

Police will not confirm what happened next but witnesses claim the man approached the getaway car and may have grabbed a door handle in an effort to get his laptop back. They say the car accelerated, causing the man to slam his head into a parked car.

Maria Chan runs a florist shop across the street and was deeply disturbed by what she saw. She described a body lying on the street.

"He was bleeding only from the head. His face was purple and blue. Fortunately someone tried to do first aid to help him," said Chan.

Police say Oakland Fire Department personnel witnessed some of the crime and immediately rendered first aid. The suspect or suspects got away.

Police are analyzing video from many of the surveillance cameras mounted throughout the business district and have not yet released a vehicle description.

Nearby residents complain of a lot of car burglaries in Montclair, some saying they're scared to shop here anymore.

Oakland police are asking for the public's help. If anyone took a photo or video of the incident they want them to contact investigators.
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