Police Shoot Robber Of Walmart Store In Pennsylvania: Was He Unarmed?

Police shot a robber of a Walmart superstore in Shrewsbury, Pennsylvania, on Thursday night. According to reports, a Pennsylvania State Trooper fired at the armed suspect outside of the store following the alleged robbery.

USA Today reports that state police received a call around 7:48 p.m. ET from Walmart that they had been robbed. Trooper Rob Hicks said an officer on duty was in the area and responded to the call. When he arrived at the scene, he encountered the accused after he left the store.

The trooper reportedly gave the armed man verbal commands to put down a shotgun, Hicks said. The suspect raised his gun and the trooper was able to push the muzzle of the suspect’s gun away, but the two fired off one round each of their guns. The trooper’s bullet struck the man in the chest, Hicks said.

Police have not released the robber’s identity. He was transferred to York Hospital where his condition is unknown, but the trooper said he was responsive at the scene.

“It looks like at this point like his intentions were to take prescription medication,” Hicks said. “It’s a very scary situation for everyone involved. Thank God, no one else was hurt.”

The officer who shot the alleged robber has been put on administrative leave pending an investigation into the shooting.

One witness, Roni Zentz, was sitting on a bench inside the store near the pharmacy as she checked her phone when the incident occurred. She noticed a man yelling at pharmacy employees inside the Walmart store. She said he was holding close to him a black garbage bag and that when he pulled it back, it appeared a shotgun was inside it. Zentz told someone to call security and heard two shots fire consecutively. She instructed everyone to “run” after realizing what had unfolded.

“I ran through the garden section,” Zentz said.

Zentz said the robber had been shot near the doorway and that he was placed in an ambulance.

Police are still investigating the robbery.

A few weeks ago in Fulton County, South Central Pennsylvania, a retired trooper was shot and killed. The man killed was retired Trooper Clarence Briggs of Newville, Pennsylvania.

The Morning Call reports that Briggs fatally shot a Pennsylvania Turnpike worker and a security guard in a robbery gone bad at a toll plaza he once patrolled.

Biggs had been retired just over four years. He was killed after exchanging gunfire with responding troopers on March 21. Briggs was in the process of unloading money he stole that morning from a security van at the Fort Littleton interchange in Fulton County.

Also killed in the incident were Turnpike worker Danny Crouse, 55, and security guard Ronald Heist, 71. They were the two victims that Briggs had at the toll booth.

Turnpike Chairman Sean Logan released a statement in a news conference following the shooting after the robbery.

“It is with great sadness I announce we have lost one member of our Turnpike family and one member of our extended Turnpike family during a hold-up attempt this morning,” Logan said. “Mr. Crouse, born on March 12, 1961, has been on the job less than three months.”

Anytime robberies occur, the lives of the public, as well as the suspect and law enforcement, are at risk. In the case of the robber who was shot by a police officer Thursday night, no one was killed. More often than not, serious injuries or fatalities run the gamut of botched robberies.

[Image via Maksym Bondarchuck/Shutterstock]

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