A man killed in a weekend shooting at a Starbucks coffee shop in Las Vegas was a former Georgian soldier who had become a U.S. citizen, officials and friends said on September 28.
Aleksandr Khutsishvili enlisted in the army after his country broke from the Soviet Union, and he served a stint in a unit protecting then-Georgian President Eduard Shevardnadze, David Shtromberg, a friend who grew up with Khutsishvili in Tbilisi, told AP.
Khutsishvili, 41, known to friends as "Sasha," was shot after getting into an argument with a gunman whose credit card payment for coffee was rejected, police said. Khutsishvili was unarmed.
Police have charged the gunman, Petro Garcia, with murder.
A twice-divorced father of three, Khutsishvili worked as a plumber, longshoreman, construction worker, and car wash worker. He became a U.S. citizen in 2004, Shtromberg said.
"Because he was military, he would react," Shtromberg said. "He's not the type of person to walk away from a fight...or someone else's fight."