The shopping tradition extravaganza that is Black Friday never goes off without a hitch. And this year was no exception.
As shoppers braved long lines and jostled in big crowds late Thursday and into Friday, tensions ran high and a few situations got out of hand. From gun-wielding in Texas to an abandoned child in Massachusetts, shoppers eager for a good deal let their best judgments slip away. Others just got caught in out-of-control crowds.
Late Thursday night, a dispute over line-cutting led one man to pull out a handgun in a Sears store in San Antonio, Texas, sending a panicked crowd looking for shelter, the San Antonio Express-News reports. The dispute allegedly began when one man began cutting in line and ultimately punched another man. The man he punched allegedly pulled a gun on him — though reports vary on whether he pointed the gun at his assailant or at the ground. A witness said the assailant hid behind a refrigerator before fleeing the store. The man was not arrested because he had a concealed handgun license.
The Abandoned Child
A Massachusetts man allegedly left his girlfriend’s 2-year-old son in the car while he shopped at a Kmart in Springfield, Mass., and then went home with a new 51-inch television — but no child, 22 News WWLP reports. Police found the child sleeping in the car in the Kmart parking lot around 1:30 a.m. Friday. The man, Anthony Perry of Springfield, denied leaving the child in the car, saying he lost track of the boy in the store.
It’s unclear how Perry got from the Kmart to his house without the car he drove there in. Perry will be charged with reckless endangerment of a child, police say.
A Line-Cutter Gets Arrested
A 28-year-old woman allegedly tried to finagle her way to the front of the checkout line at a Walmart in Altamonte Springs, Fla., ultimately leading to an unsettling scene on Thanksgiving night. Police said they warned Samantha Chavez several times to wait her turn. When officers attempted to usher her out of the store, WKMG Local 6 reports that Chavez began screaming and throwing merchandise that she had originally intended to purchase. Chavez was arrested for disorderly conduct and resisting arrest. She was released from Seminole County jail after posting a $550 bond. Below is a video of her arrest.
Walmart Crowd Goes Crazy For Cell Phones
Walmart officials are breathing a sigh of relief after there were no reported injuries at a south Georgia store where bedlam broke out on Friday. In what may be construed as a slight understatement, a spokesman for the company said a cell phone deal that included a prepaid, unlimited usage plan “led to excitement among our customers” at the Moultrie, Ga., location, according to the Associated Press. Video footage of the “excitement” shows a congested and chaotic scene, with dozens of customers trying desperately to get their hands on various products.
Watch the video here.
Man Threatens To Stab People
When tensions rose in a crowd outside a Sacramento Kmart on Friday, one man allegedly responded with the threat of violence. After store workers began distributing vouchers to the hundreds of people in line — many of whom had been gathered outside the store since 2 a.m. — some in the crowd grew unruly and began shouting obscenities, prompting a man in the crowd to threaten to stab others, the Los Angeles Times reports. Police said that customers eventually filed into the store safely.
The Shattered Glass Door
An excited crowd of shoppers broke a glass door at an Urban Outfitters in Santa Monica, Calif., the Los Angeles Times reports. When the doors were unlocked at midnight, the eager shoppers surged into the store, breaking the 12-foot tall door and injuring at least five people. The store — which the Times points out “ironically” features broken glass motifs as part of its decor — closed briefly to clear away broken glass and treat injuries.