A suspect was arrested in connection with a stabbing at the Walmart in Campbell River.
Police arrested a man in his 30s shortly after 5 p.m. on Tuesday, Dec. 7.
The suspect remains in police in police custody as the investigation continues and was scheduled to appear in court on Wednesday, Dec. 8.
The RCMP have requested charges including Aggravated Assault and Robbery.
A security guard in his sixties was stabbed by a man wearing a purple wig at the Walmart Supercentre store in Campbell River Tuesday morning, according to RCMP.
Const. Maury Tyre of the Campbell River RCMP said the incident happened around 11 a.m. on Dec. 7. Initial reports said the suspect attempted to leave the store with a shopping cart filled with unpaid-for items. However, over the course of the investigation it was determined that the suspect had been previously asked to leave by security, and had returned to the store in a disguise.
A security guard told the suspect he still needed to leave, after which the suspect threatened the guard with a knife. That guard disengaged and the suspect walked away, RCMP say.
A second guard saw the suspect, and was also threatened and stabbed at least twice. Tyre said he is in serious, but stable condition, and is expected to make a full recovery.
“The suspect then proceeded to load several TVs onto a shopping cart and flee out the fire exit,” an RCMP release says.
Brazen shoplifting has become an issue in the city, the officer noted.
He said thieves are well aware of policies within local businesses that stress not interfering with shoplifters.
The Walmart in question did not have a security detail for a while, he added.
“So unfortunately (shoplifters) have become very accustomed to doing what they want, when they want and how they want.”
Tyre called the stabbing incident ‘disturbing.’
Director of Corporate Affairs for Walmart Canada, Adam Grachnik shared the sentiment, calling the incident, ‘completely unacceptable and deeply troubling.’
“Walmart is cooperating fully with the police investigation to ensure the perpetrator is held accountable for this crime,” he said.
“We know this behaviour does not reflect our customers in Campbell River and they will join with us in condemning this assault. Our thoughts are with the security guard as he recovers from his injuries.”
The RCMP is looking for witnesses to the Dec. 7 incident.
We very much understand the public’s interest in this matter, Tyre said.
The suspect is facing the possibility of some very serious charges and our investigation is ongoing. If anyone has first hand knowledge of events that has not talked to police, we encourage them to come forward and contact the Campbell River RCMP at 250-286-6221.