|Scene of shooting at Beavercreek Walmart (source)|
(UPDATED -- See below)
22-year old John Crawford was seen loading a rifle in a Walmart store in Beavercreek, Ohio, near Dayton, then threatening customers, including children, with it. Police responded and shot him to death when he wouldn't drop the weapon.
During the evacuation, a 37-year old woman, Angela Williams, also collapsed and died, apparently due to unrelated health issues, while trying to evacuate herself and her two children.
From an article:
Authorities say a customer also died after suffering a medical problem during the evacuation of the store Tuesday. Police identified her as Angela Williams, 37, of Fairborn.
Police identified the man shot Tuesday night at a Wal-Mart in the suburb of Beavercreek as 22-year-old John Crawford of . He died at a hospital.
It's unclear why he had the weapon in the store. A statement from police didn't address Crawford's motives or provide further details about him. No phone was listed for Crawford at the address police had for him.
Beavercreek police said initial investigations indicate the officers responded appropriately. State investigators will review the shooting.
A man who witnessed the scene told a 911 dispatcher that a man with a rifle was near the pet supplies section and appeared to be loading the firearm.
"There is a gentleman walking around with a gun in the store. ... He's, like, pointing it at people," the witness said. Later in the call, sounds like gunshots can be heard, followed by someone screaming for people to leave.
Wal-Mart spokeswoman Brooke Buchanan said by email Wednesday that the company is working with investigators and is "deeply saddened about the loss of life."
Walmart is "deeply saddened," but not enough to actually change any of their gun sales or gun carrying policies.
It turns out the rifle was a realistic-looking pellet gun, which Crawford stole and loaded while inside the store. From another article:
A law enforcement source tells the Dayton Daily News and News Center 7 that the gun used in the Walmart shooting was a realistic-looking toy gun. ....
[Customer] Ronald Ritche said the man "was just waving it at children and people. Items.... I couldn't hear anything that he was saying. I'm thinking that he is either going to rob the place or he's there to shoot somebody else." The man looked kind of serious, Ronald Ritchie said. "He didn't really want to be looked at and when people did look at him, he was pointing the gun at them. He was pointing at people. Children walking by."HERE is more information on the gun in question. HERE is Walmart's online sales page for the black version (it also comes in tan).
In two years, I've chronicled at least 23 incidents involving realistic-looking pellet guns used in crimes and shootings at Walmart stores. How many does it take for Walmart to stop selling these dangerous items?
Pellet guns are not toys, and there is no good reason for them to look like the real thing!
Ronald Ritche said the man "was just waving it at children and people. Items.... I couldn't hear anything that he was saying. I'm thinking that he is either going to rob the place or he's there to shoot somebody else." The man looked kind of serious, Ronald Ritchie said. "He didn't really want to be looked at and when people did look at him, he was pointing the gun at them. He was pointing at people. Children walking by." - See more at: http://www.whio.com/news/news/report-shooting-beavercreek-wal-mart/ngwTS/#sthash.b5Bw9h1m.dpuf
Walmart. Save money. Die faster.
UPDATE (8/9/14): The woman who collapsed while trying to get her children to safety, Angela Williams, was shopping for school supplies and for her upcoming wedding that weekend.
UPDATE (8/9/14): More information on the realistic-looking pellet gun that the suspect was using to threaten people and that got him shot to death, from an article:
a “variable pump air rifle” made by Crosman Corp.
The owner’s manual for the MK-177 BB/Pellet rifle warns that misuse can result in serious injury or death. And it specifically warns about waving it in public. “Police and others may think it is a firearm,” the manual states.
There was no immediate response to an email seeking comment sent Thursday to the Rochester, New York-based manufacturer.
UPDATE (8/9/14): Despite at least 25 incidents of crimes committed at Walmart stores in just the last couple years using realistic-looking pellet guns, Walmart refuses to stop selling them.
|A similar-looking Bushmaster ACR assault rifle|
UPDATE (8/10/14): A pro-gun, anti-cop group is protesting outside the Walmart store where this occurred. But instead of protesting the fact that Walmart sells pellet guns that are so realistic that even police can't tell them apart, they are protesting the police for shooting the suspect!
|A similar-looking SCAR 16S assault rifle|
UPDATE (8/10/14): Listen to example 9-1-1 calls, HERE.
ADDENDUM (8/13/14): HERE is the SCAR rifle and HERE is a Bushmaster ACR assault rifle, both of which the MK-177 pellet rifle is made to look like. Compare the two pictures, above. If someone pointed one of these at you from a short distance, do you think you could tell the difference?