Video captures father fighting off burglar in West Los Angeles

Surveillance footage captured the moment a father fought off a burglar at his home in the Pico-Robertson area, but only after the thief made off with thousands of dollars in recording equipment. 

Video of the burglary shows the thief, his face covered, wiping his fingerprints off Daniel Lobell’s school bus turned mobile recording studio.  

“I haven’t been able to sleep in days and every little noise, I jump up to protect my family,” Lobell told KTLA.  

A comedian, Lobell owns the bus, which he parks behind his home. The bus is his office where he records his popular podcast “Modern Day Philosophers,” a show that features comics talking about philosophy. The mobile recording studio, which he also uses for other productions, is his livelihood. 

“I worked my ass off to build this business so that I could stand on my own two feet and do something, a business that I know I’m good at, that I know I can help other people with,” the comedian said.  

The burglary happened last Thursday afternoon when the thief climbed the wall into the backyard and broke into the bus. Video shows the man carrying away bags of Lobell’s equipment.  

“They stole my cameras. They stole my board. They stole my switcher. They stole my headphones. They stole my headphone amp, my memory cards…approximately about $25,000 of equipment,” he said.  

Lobell said he noticed the door to his bus was open and then discovered that his gear was missing. Several hours later, after he assessed everything that had been taken, the burglar returned to the backyard.  

“I’m looking down as I’m walking because I’m so upset and I look up and there’s the guy, back two hours later cleaning his fingerprints off,” Lobell said. “I said to him, ‘I’m going to kill you,’ and I went after him. I tried to grab the trampoline out of the play thing, to use it as a weapon, but I couldn’t get it out.”  

  • Daniel Lobell podcast bus
  • Daniel Lobell podcast bus
  • Daniel Lobell podcast bus
  • Daniel Lobell podcast bus
  • Daniel Lobell podcast bus

Despite the financial hardship, the comedian said he’s just glad that his family wasn’t harmed.  

“One thing I keep reminding myself throughout this whole thing is that everything happens for a reason and God is good. And there’s something good that’s going to come out of this,” he said. “I don’t know what it is, but maybe what’ll come out of this is this will cause a stir and the police will prioritize this and they’ll get this guy and it’ll restore peace of mind to myself and my wife and we can sleep again at night. Maybe what else will come is that he won’t be able to do this to anyone else. Maybe it’ll raise awareness about these encampments.” 

Lobell filed a police report and turned the surveillance video over to authorities in hopes of catching the crook. In the meantime, the comedian started a GoFundMe campaign so that he can rebuild the mobile recording studio and get back to work.   

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