PINEVILLE, N.C. (QUEEN CITY NEWS) — A Walmart employee was shot in the leg during a scuffle inside the store that began over unpaid chicken, according to the Pineville Police Department.

The incident happened sometime before 6:30 p.m. on Sunday, January 28, at the Walmart Neighborhood Market on Pineville-Matthews Road in Pineville.

According to police, the suspect, Jonathan Alan Smith, was checking out at the self-checkout station when a Walmart employee noticed that he had not scanned some chicken and dog food.

Photo: Jonathan Alan Smith via MCSO

Authorities said the Walmart employee confronted Smith. Smith then paid for the dog food but still failed to pay for the chicken, police explained.

The employee then attempted to grab the stolen chicken from Smith. Authorities said, “A scuffle between them started when Walmart employees broke up the fight.”

Smith left the store but returned shortly after with a firearm near his right pocket, police said.

Police said Smith then confronted multiple Walmart employees inside the store. Another fight began between several employees and Smith. During this fight, the firearm that Smith had in his pocket fell out and everyone tried to get control of the firearm, police said.

During this scuffle for control of the firearm, police said one of the Walmart employees was shot in the leg when the gun went off.

Witnesses told Queen City News that the commotion inside the store resulted in panic.

“I started moving towards the checkout, and I heard a very loud thunder sound, shooting sound,” said Marina, who said she was inside the store as everything was happening. “People started screaming in panic, and they just ran, and I started moving with them, going towards the back door.”

Smith has been taken into custody and charged with assault with a deadly weapon inflicting serious injury and misdemeanor larceny of the chicken.

Pineville Police said the Walmart employee who was shot was treated for minor injuries.

“The safety and security of our associates is a priority at all times,” Walmart said in a statement. “We are working with local law enforcement and will refer additional questions to them.”

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Credit: Original content published here.

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