Shoppers at a Walmart in Louisiana were anxious when gunfire broke out Tuesday, following a mass shooting at an El Paso Wal-Mart over the weekend.
Police say they apprehended one suspect and are still looking for another after a verbal altercation at the Baton Rouge Walmart’s customer service desk descended into an active shooter event.
“Deputies arrested one suspect, but the other fled off in a light-colored sedan,” reports WAFB.com. “Detectives are actively looking for the second suspect. He is a slightly built, thin, black male wearing black shorts, black shirt and short haircut.”
One witness described to WAFB hearing a man joke to his daughter, “You know, we can’t be too careful — we’re in a Walmart,” to which the daughter laughed, moments before she noticed a man with a gun and the sound of gunfire.
“People were actually trying to video, and you’re saying, ‘Go! Move! Move! Move!’ and oh my goodness,” the witness said. “So we made our way to the back of the store and got out on the side and we just started running. I left my purse and my cane.”
East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff Sid Gautreaux said both suspects involved were armed with pistols.
While no Walmart employees were injured, one innocent bystander was shot, but was able to transport himself to a nearby hospital.
Baton Rouge Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome provided an update on the situation, alerting residents the incident is still being looked into:
“Today, a shooting at a Walmart on Burbank Drive in the southern part of the City-Parish caused a brief panic for shoppers still on edge after two mass shootings in Texas and Ohio this weekend. It was a dispute between two people that escalated into careless violence. The incident is still under investigation. An innocent bystander did go to the hospital with a gunshot wound but no other injuries have been reported.
A shooting at an El Paso, Texas, Walmart over the weekend left 22 dead and dozens injured. That shooting was followed by another in Dayton, Ohio, that left 9 dead.
The FBI has warned the public to beware of copycat attacks in the wake of the two incidents.
“The FBI remains concerned that U.S.-based domestic violent extremists could become inspired by these and previous high-profile attacks to engage in similar acts of violence,” the agency said in a statement. “The FBI asks the American public to report to law enforcement any suspicious activity that is observed either in person or online.”
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