CRIME

Armed Man Walked Into Missouri Walmart With Ammo, Body Armor, Police Say

No shots were fired, but a police lieutenant said that the man's "intent obviously was to cause chaos."

Police officers arrested an armed man who reportedly walked into a Walmart in Springfield, Missouri, on Thursday afternoon while wearing body armor and military-style clothing.

The Springfield Police Department described the suspect as an armed white male in his 20s. An off-duty firefighter who was armed detained the man until police arrived at the Walmart Neighborhood Market. No shots were fired and no one was injured, police said.

Police Lt. Mike Lucas told the Springfield News-Leader that the man had a “tactical rifle,” another gun and more than 100 rounds of ammunition on him.

Missouri has an open-carry firearm law that allows anyone with a concealed carry permit to “briefly and openly” display their firearm. The law prohibits people from intentionally displaying the firearm in an “angry or threatening” manner.

Lucas said the suspect may have been trying to provoke other people.

“His intent obviously was to cause chaos here, and he did that,” the lieutenant told the News-Leader.

Photos taken at the scene and obtained by Ozarks First show a man armed with a rifle and wearing a military-style vest walking with his arms raised above his head.

According to local news station KY3, police said that the man walked through the store pushing a cart and used a cellphone to record himself throughout the store. A store manager reportedly pulled a fire alarm so that shoppers would leave the store.

Lucas told Ozarks First that there may be a Facebook live video of the man.

Police are still investigating the incident and are working to determine the man’s motives. He remained in custody in Springfield as of late Thursday.

Lucas told reporters that the man was “lucky to be alive,” according to Ozarks First.

“His intent was not to cause peace or comfort to anybody that was in the business,” Lucas said. “In fact, he’s lucky to be alive still, to be honest.”

The scare in Springfield occurred as people across the U.S. are still mourning back-to-back mass shootings last weekend that left at least 31 people dead.

A Walmart in El Paso, Texas, was the scene of one of the mass shootings, which left 22 dead and dozens more injured.

This story has been updated with more information on Missouri’s open carry law.

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