Jewish Beverly Hills couple robbed at gunpoint

A quiet Shabbat dinner at the Beverly Hills home of Samuel and Diana Hirt was interrupted May 30 when, after answering knocks at their front door, the couple were overrun by three masked intruders, one of whom shot Diana Hirt in the leg, according to police and a family friend.

The three men, at least one of whom brandished a handgun, led the older couple through the house, took valuables, shot Hirt in the leg, and tied up her and Samuel Hirt before fleeing eastbound on Doheny Road in a vehicle, the Beverly Hills Police Department said.

After struggling to untie himself, Samuel Hirt rushed to the phone and called the police. He and his wife were taken to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, where the latter is still recovering from what is said to be a non-life-threatening wound.

Rabbi Mordechai Kirschenbaum of Chabad in the Hills, which leads a regular minyan at the Hirt home in Trousdale Estates, said he first heard about the burglary when he was walking up to the couple’s house the following morning, expecting to lead Shabbat services. He had been there the night before, leading the Shabbat evening minyan, which let out at 7:30 p.m., only one hour before the home invasion.

“When I walked up with my kids, we were greeted by a television crew,” Kirschenbaum told the Journal. “Suddenly people started coming out of their houses. They were crying and upset.”

Kirschenbaum immediately walked to the hospital to find out what happened.

“They said [to the intruders], ‘Take whatever you need. Please just leave us alone,” Kirschenbaum said, relating his conversation with Samuel Hirt. “They have a sefer Torah [Torah scroll] in their house. They were laughing that that's the most valuable thing they have at home.” The burglars did not steal the Torah.

He said that Diana Hirt is expected to make a full recovery.

“It blows my mind,” Kirschenbaum added. “They are the nicest, kindest people. Everybody loves them.”

Police spokesman Lt. Lincoln Hoshino said no one is in custody and police are still trying to identify suspects.

“We don't have a whole lot,” Hoshino said. “We are working on it.”