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Authorities in Georgia say two people were killed in a shooting at a Walmart Wednesday afternoon.
Hiram Police Chief Mike Turner said the shooting at the Walmart Supercenter at 4166 Jimmy Lee Smith Parkway occurred around 7:30 p.m., FOX 5 reported. The police chief said it appeared to be a murder-suicide, and that the deceased, including one man and one woman, were “young people” who had previously been in relationships.
“Apparently it was a well-known shooting incident where both sides knew each other. This was not an active shooter. This was a case where one person knew another, some kind of had a previous relationship,” Turner said.
Officers found a man and woman with at least one gunshot wound and took them to Wellstar Kennestone Hospital, the report said. They were pronounced dead on arrival.
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Chief Turner did not release his identity as he is awaiting notification from next of kin. He clarified that the deceased man was considered the perpetrator and the woman was the victim.
“As you can imagine, I was there shopping to get some things for my family when the gunshots rang out. This type of incident not only affected the victim himself, but also the other people who were there. “There was a fear inflicted by them,” the director explained.
“This is one of those things that happens where two people meet by chance. We have no control over that,” he continued. “Literally if there were cops standing on the other side of Walmart, they wouldn’t have been able to prevent this.”
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Witnesses told FOX 5 Atlanta they heard gunshots and evacuated the store.
Witness Devani Lopez told the newspaper: “As soon as I heard the second gunshot, I heard a gunshot from my left side, so I ran straight towards the exit.” “I ran straight towards the car and I could see everyone running for their lives. Everyone was so panicked and scared.”
Walmart issued a statement Wednesday night saying it was “heartbroken” and was following the instructions of law enforcement authorities.
“We are saddened by the events that occurred tonight at our Hiram store. Our top priority at this time is the safety of our employees and customers. We are cooperating with law enforcement as they investigate. The store will remain closed while we are there.”
Last year, six victims and the gunman were killed in a mass shooting at a Walmart in Chesapeake, Virginia. Major retail chains have been plagued by small-scale shootings at various locations in recent years.
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About two weeks after the 2022 Chesapeake shooting, a shooting occurred outside a Walmart in Marietta, Georgia.
Marietta is about 25 miles from Hiram.
The investigation into the shooting is still ongoing.