Friday, November 25, 2011

It’s that time of the year again: Black Friday violence erupts

     Good Morning Humboldt County!

Welcome to this special Black Friday posting. You’re about to read how crazy people can  get when it comes to saving money. It seems to get worse every year, but retailers say the day brings in from 30% to 40% of their annual sales.

I can’t help noticing most of the trouble happens at Wal Mart stores. Is there a social comment there? Have a cup of coffee with me, pull up a chair, and see what you think. 

Violence erupted at Black Friday sales across the U.S. with one bargain-hunter left critically injured after being shot during a robbery and 15 other people injured when an angry shopper used pepper spray.

Several of the incidents took place at Wal-Mart stores as millions of Americans loaded up on holiday purchases.

Updated 10:39 a.m. ET: Police said they were investigating a possible shooting in the parking lot of Valley West Mall in West Des Moines, Iowa, NBC station WHO reported. There was no immediate report that anyone was injured.

Police got a call of shots fired shortly before 4 a.m., when the mall opened. They wouldn't say whether they had a suspect, and they reassured shoppers that the mall is safe..

Updated 9:50 a.m. ET: A 55-year-old shopper was shot and wounded during a robbery near a Wal-Mart in Myrtle Beach, S.C., NBC station WMBF reported.

Tonia Robbins, 55, was shot in the foot after two men demanded her purse shortly after 1 a.m. ET Friday as she stood by the trunk of her car with friends.

Updated 9:45 a.m. ET: An explosive device was found at a break room at a Wal-Mart in Cave Creek, Ariz., according to reports Friday. 

Maricopa County Sheriff's Office said a suspicious package was found inside a refrigerator in the store break room on Thursday. The store was evacuated as a precaution while deputies investigated the package.

Updated at 9:40 a.m. ET: A Black Friday shopper was shot and critically injured during a robbery outisde a Wal-Mart in San Leandro, Calif., early Friday, police said.

Police patrolling the parking lot found a victim suffering a gunshot wound and a possible suspect being detained by family members of the victim.

Police said the victims were walking to their car with their purchases and were approached by multiple suspects who demanded the merchandise.

A fight ensued and one suspect pulled out a gun and shot one of the victims. Some of the victims wrestled down one suspect as the other suspect fled the scene.

The victim who was shot is in critical but stable condition at a local hospital. The suspect in custody is an adult male in his mid '20s, but it is not known if he was the shooter.

Updated at 7.30 a.m. ET: An angry woman used pepper spray when Black Friday bargain-hunters tried to cut in line at a crowded Wal-Mart store in Los Angeles late Thursday, leaving 15 people with minor injuries. The incident occurred shortly after 10:20 p.m. PT (1:20 a.m. ET Friday) in the San Fernando Valley as shoppers looking for deals were let inside the outlet.

NBC News reported police said no more than 15 were hurt, 10 of them for the effects of inhalation of pepper spray.

Police Lt. Abel Parga said a woman used pepper spray, then left. Parga said police were looking for the woman and no arrests have been made. "It was an unhappy customer,'' he said.

A witness told Los Angeles' NBC4 that the incident started as people waited in line for the new Xbox 360.

The witness said a woman with two children in tow became upset with the way people were pushing in line. The witness said the woman pulled out pepper spray and sprayed the other people.

NBC News quoted a police officer as saying the flare-up was triggered when a crowd rushed toward merchandise following a "big reveal" of items that had been hidden by draping.

Update at 5:45 a.m. ET: Authorities say gunfire erupted at a North Carolina mall as holiday shoppers gathered, the Associated Press reported.

The Cumberland County Sheriff's Office said detectives were looking for two suspects after gunfire rang out at Cross Creek Mall in Fayetteville early Friday. No injuries were reported.

The first shots were fired around 2 a.m. outside the mall near a food court entrance. Investigators say several more shots were fired after one of the suspects ran inside the mall. (article source)


Tom Sebourn said...

In defense of the angry pepper spraying woman. She may have been watching Fox News when the anchor said that pepper spray is really just a food product. This after questions arose on the set of why some students weren't writhing around in pain after a stupid UC cop in Davis treated a line of peaceful protesters like insects and liberally sprayed the students with pepper spray. If you watched Fox News you might be tempted to use this on your kids when they get out of hand. After it's safe, it's just a food product.

Tom Sebourn said...

In fact, safety of the students was why they were pepper sprayed in the first place.

That was the official excuse across the country for shooting people with pepper spray, tear gas canisters and bean bags shot from shot guns.

If not this violence, some protesters may have gotten sick from germs.