Oxon Hill hotel employee fatally shot during robbery - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

Oxon Hill hotel employee fatally shot during robbery

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Jesse Alexis Chavez (center) Jesse Alexis Chavez (center)

A hotel worker was shot to death by a robber Monday night as the worker came to the aid of a pregnant desk clerk. It happened around 10 p.m. at the Clarion Hotel in Oxon Hill, Md.­

Multiple signs warn would-be robbers that video surveillance cameras are utilized at the hotel. That did not deter the man who arrived in a dark sedan late Monday night. Security video shows him brandishing a handgun and coming over the desk.

A source at the hotel says the female clerk is pregnant, she was terrified, and she screamed aloud as the gunman forced her to open a cash drawer and give him the money. Although the robber is wearing a hooded sweatshirt, a profile view of his face (in the video) can be seen pretty clearly.

The scream caught the attention of the 27-year-old restaurant manager, Jesse Alexis Chavez, who ran to the front door of the hotel.

“We believe a struggle did ensue,” explained Capt. George Nichols of the Prince George’s County Police Dept. “And Mr. Chavez, in the course of trying to prevent him from leaving, did in fact struggle with him. And then he was shot.”

Chavez died just outside the front door of the hotel.

Police are hoping that someone will recognize the face of the robber from widespread distribution of the security video.

Dep. Chief Hank Stewinski told reporters his department is anxious to make an apprehension: “For them to take this sort of action (once they have the funds – they’ve gotten what they came for). To shoot this man on their way out, that’s outrageous. That’s why we need to apprehend this individual because they pose a threat to this community.”

The video shows only one man participating in the robbery, but police are unsure whether a second person was driving the car used by the gunman.

Family members of the murdered restaurant manager are devastated, but say it was in character for Jesse Chavez to come to the aid of a fellow worker.

Vivian Chavez, the victim’s sister, told reporters: “Anytime there were any issues at the hotel … he was the one who would stand up for his coworkers. Especially the young females.”

Jesse Chavez was a big fan of the Redskins. His mother, also named Vivian Chavez, wore Jesse’s jersey as she spoke with reporters about his character: “He was very loving. For a 27-year-old young man, to walk around holding his mother’s hand – how often do you see that?”

Late in the afternoon, family and friends of the murdered restaurant manager gathered for a vigil in front of the hotel. They spoke briefly with a manager and then left.

Police have posted a reward of up to $25,000 for information leading to an arrest and conviction in the case.

Anyone with information about this case is asked to call the Prince George’s County Police Department’s Homicide Unit at 301-772-4925. Callers wishing to remain anonymous may call Crime Solvers at 1-866-411 TIPS (8477), text “PGPD plus your message” to CRIMES (274637) on your cell phone or go to www.pgcrimesolvers.com and submit a tip online.

Surveillance photographs of the suspect robbing the front desk of the Clarion Hotel (Prince George's County Police Department)

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