An armed shopper shot and killed a suspected carjacker who opened fire in a busy Walmart parking lot over the weekend.
The incident transpired Sunday afternoon in Tumwater, Washington, according to The News Tribune. At least two victims were injured before the gunman was taken out, including one 16-year-old girl.
Police said the incident started in the parking lot of Tumwater High School. When officers noticed a stolen vehicle, they chased the suspect to a nearby Walmart parking lot. The suspect then exited the vehicle and attempted to highjack another car, shooting the driver in the arm, according to Tumwater Police Department police spokeswoman, Laura Wohl.
That’s when the armed bystander took swift action, shooting the suspect dead.
Tumwater spokeswoman says civilian shot and killed suspected gunman/carjacker in parking lot of Tumwater #walmart. Another civilian victim shot and airlifted to Harborview in Seattle. A 16 year old girl shot at a different scene has minor wounds pic.twitter.com/T4zS9ZTLRQ
— Austin Jenkins N3 (@AustinJenkinsN3) June 18, 2018
Witnesses reported hearing at least 10 gunshots. One man, Darren Gossler, took to Twitter to recall his version of events.
I was in the dairy section. Heard about 5 or 6 pops. Ran out a side emergency exit and attempted to run to my car in the parking lot but heard 4 more pops in the lot. Caught a quick glimpse of a male with what appeared to be a handgun. Ducked under some cars and ran to Costco.
— Darren Gossler (@Goose1701) June 18, 2018
“I was in the dairy section,” he wrote. “Heard about 5 or 6 pops. Ran out a side emergency exit and attempted to run to my car in the parking lot but heard 4 more pops in the lot.”
“Caught a quick glimpse of a male with what appeared to be a handgun,” Gossler added. “Ducked under some cars and ran to Costco.”
Caitlyn Wallner of Tenino was standing in the self-checkout line when she heard a loud “pop” sound. Confused, she thought something heavy had fallen onto the floor. Then she looked at another customer who screamed, “There’s a guy shooting. Everybody run!” Wallner told The News Tribune.
“Somebody yelled ‘Run, run!’ and everyone took off,” recalled another witness from inside the store, Kailani Bailey. “When I got outside, I heard more pop, pop, pop.”
“There were three civilians going after him to shoot him and two of them had their guns up and then the third guy shot him through the window of the car,” Megan Chadwick, another bystander who witnessed the armed confrontation, told KIRO-TV.
“I looked over and saw hundreds of people running out,” another woman added. “Just a flood of people and everyone was screaming and frantic. When we got about to the door, I heard someone say, ‘gun. Shooter.’ And I knew something was serious.”
Another witness, Brian Adams, recalled how he dove for cover behind vehicles in the Walmart parking lot. Like many others, Adams hailed the armed bystander an absolute hero who saved lives.
“He is a hero. If this customer hadn’t done what he did, who knows what would have happened,” he told the Seattle Times. “This guy could have taken out more people, wounded or killed.”
(H/T: The News Tribune)